Johann Heinrich Schröder
Oval Portrait of King Frederick WIlliam II of Prussia
Oil on canvas. 55 x 45 cm.
Frederick William II (1744-1797) became King of Prussia in 1786, succeeding his uncle Frederick the Great. The monarch was considered a patron of both the fine arts and literature and music. Under his reign, Berlin became a cultural center of the classical period, alongside Weimar.
Marieluise Spangenberg listed eight portraits of Frederick William II in her catalog raisonné of Johann Heinrich Schröder (cf. M. Spangenberg: Der Meininger Porträtmaler Johann Heinrich Schröder (1757-1812). Monograph and catalog raisonné, Meiningen 1995, nos. 141-148). The present portrait could be number 147. In his expertise, Helmut Börsch-Supan mentions that Marieluise Spangenberg confirmed to him that the painting is an original. Furthermore, he emphasizes: "The execution is exceptionally fine, as evidenced especially by the ribbon of the Order of the Black Eagle and the embroidery on the uniform."
Prof. Dr. Helmut Börsch-Supan, Berlin, 9.4.2019.