jueves, 4 de agosto de 2016


Christa Zaat

Albert Janesch (Austrian painter) 1889 - 1973
A Busy Bazaar, 1918
oil on panel
108.5 x 140 cm. (42.75 x 55.13 in.)
signed ALBERT JANESCH and dated 1918 (lower right)
private collection

Catalogue Note Sotheby's
In the beginning of World War I, the twenty-five year old Janesch travelled to Turkey, an ally of his native Austria, serving as a war artist. Soon after Janesch met up with fellow artist Fritz Grotemeyer, employed in recording scenes from the front at Suez, and the two then travelled to Alepo, Syria in early 1916. As suggested by another large panel dated 1918 and titled Market in Aleppo (private collection), the present work may depict the same area, the wares on offer as diverse as the regional costumes and people depicted. A Busy Bazaar exemplifies Janesch's documentary style, every detail of the bustling market, here a crossroads of cultures, recorded in fine detail and vibrant color from a merchant haggling his tableware to a punch about to be thrown in the background. Overall, little is known of Janesch's exact agenda during the War and soon after, but surviving drawings suggest the artist travelled to Beirut and Damascus, while portraits of Sultan Mehmed and Prince Osman Fouad (now held by the Heeresgeschichtliches Museum, Vienna) further point to the extent of his travels (Martina Jaja and Günther Wimmer, Les Orientalistes des Écoles Allemande et Autrichienne, Paris, 2000, p. 272).

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