Rudolf Ritter von Ottenfeld - WALLENSTEIN'S CAMP
Rudolf Ritter von Ottenfeld
Oil on canvas. 95.5 x 118 cm.
R. v. Ottenfeld.
Label fragments to the reverse of the frame: "From / [...] homas McLean / [...] Publisher".
Born in Verona, Rudolf Otto Ritter, painter of the Orient and of battle scenes, was taught by Carl Wurzinger and K. L. Müller at the Academy of Vienna. From 1883 to 1893 he lived in Munich and then in Vienna, where he was a founding member of the "Wiener Secession" between 1897 and 1903. From 1900 until his death he was a professor at the Prague Academy. At this time in Germany, no one else painted such horrific and realistic battle scenes. He also emphasised other horrific aspects of the war. His 1897 painting entitled "Battle of the Dead" depicts a ruined landscape filled with corpses following the defeat at Königgrätz (cf. Werner Hager: Geschichte in Bildern. Studien zur Historienmalerei des 19. Jahrhunderts, Hildesheim 1989, pg. 311 illus. 118).
This painting depicts a scene from the Thirty Years' War and is traditionally entitled "Wallensteins letztes Nachtlager". The features of the seated protagonist of this piece are unmistakably those of the imperial Generalissimo (1583-1634).
Private collection, Rhineland.