Maurycy Gottlieb (1856 – 1879)


Saladin and Sittah. Illustration for “Nathan the Wise” by Lessing, 1877, ink on canvas; 36 x 30 cm (14 1/8 x 11 7/8 in.), signed lower right


Josef Stieglitz, Tel Aviv

Dr. Lewitt, tel Aviv

Private collection, New York


Maurycy Gottlieb, Bezalel National Museum, Jerusalem, 1956

In the Flower of Youth: Maurycy Gottlieb 1856-1879, Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Tel Aviv, Israel, May 16 – July 20, 1991 and National Museum in Warsaw, Poland, August 19 – October 20, 1991. Catalogued as #30 in the exhibition.


Zofia Soltysowa, The Painter Maurycy Gottlieb (Krakow: Rocznik Krakowski, 1977), list of works, p. 178

  1. Narkiss, Maurycy Gottliebexhibition catalog, (Jerusalem: Bezalel National Museum, 1956), no 14

Nehemia Guranik et. al., In the Flower of Youth: Maurycy Gottlieb, 1856-1879, (Tel Aviv: Tel Aviv Museum of Art / Dvir Publishers, 1991), no 30, ill. p. 192

Many museum-goers know Maurycy Gottlieb`s famous works at the National Museum in Warsaw and Tel Aviv Museum of Art, including Christ Preaching at Capernaum and Jews Praying in the Synagogue on Yom Kippur in Warsaw and Tel Aviv respectively. Maurycy (Moses) Gottlieb was born in Drohobych to a wealthy, Yiddish and Polish speaking orthodox Jewish family living in Galicia, one of eleven children of Isaac Gottlieb and Fanya Tigerman. At 15 years of age, Gottlieb enrolled at the Vienna Fine Arts Academy, where he studied for three yers, before leaving for Krakow in 1873 to study under Jan Matejko. He is considered to be one of the most talented painters to have ever studied under Matejko. In Krakow, Gottlieb also became good friends with Jacek Malczewski, who was a proponent of Gottlieb`s art and fiercely protested when anti-semitism forced him to leave the Krakow Academy.

In the next years, Gottlieb lived and worked in Vienna, Munich, and Rome, where he became friends with Henryk Siemiradzi. At a reunion with Jan Matejko in Rome, he was convinced to move back to Krakow by Matejko, where he worked on a series of paintings including scenes fromt the history of the Jews in Poland. Gottlieb`s life took a tragic turn, due to his romantic relationship with Laura Rosenfeld, the subject of many of his paintings including “Shylock and Jessica,” for which he won a gold medal in Munich. Having originally accepted a marriage proposal made to her by Gottlieb, Rosenfeld eventually lost interest in the young painter, and confessed that she had fallen in love with someone else. With a broken heart, and hearing about her impending marriage with a Berlin banker, Gottlieb knowingly exposed himself to the elements, dying at the age of 23 from complications due to a cold and sore throat.

Despite his tragically young demise, in his short life Gottlieb managed to complete over 200 works, including paintings and sketches. The present artwork, illustrating a scene from Nathan the Wise, a verse drama written by Gotthold Ephraim Lessing in 1779, was a favorite subject of Gottlieb`s paintings. The play dealt with themes of religious tolerance and identity, recurring themes in Gottlieb`s own works. It is no wonder, then, that one of the essays written for the exhibition catalogue of the 1991 retrospective of Gottlieb`s works in Tel Aviv in Warsaw, was entitled “Maurycy Gottlieb: Ahauser and Dreamer. A Polish-Jewish or Jewish-Polish artist?”.

Estimate $9,000-11,000. Shapiro. 09/17/16

Obiekt nie został sprzedany.



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