Description of the artwork «A factory building near an icy river in winter»
Frits Thaulow’s first teacher, the Dane Carl Frederik Sørensen, was a master of seascapes. Therefore, the first pictorial love of the young artist was water. However, he carried this affection through his entire career. Thaulow painted water as if it were a living being, with its unique character and different moods. His rivers, seas, Venetian canals were always painted very carefully and skilfully, regardless of the technique.
The second great love of Thaulow was snow. However, it is not surprising for a person who was born and lived an impressive part of his life in Norway. His winter landscapes, even though desolate and deserted, do not seem gloomy or dreary. They are filled with tranquillity and peace. It is interesting that in winter, daylight hours lasts only an hour and a half in Norway, but Thaulow still managed to catch the rare sun rays and their reflections in the snow, while working in the open air.
Both loves of the artist united in his A Factory Building near an Icy River in Winter painting. This work is executed in pastel, and therefore it is surprising how the glare on the icy water and the sun reflections on the snow and the building wall are painted. Looking at this picture, it is difficult to understand whether it depicts the early winter, when the river just began to freeze, or the early spring. However, for some reason there is a feeling that the nature is already awakening from its dreams, and the river is being freed from the ice shackles. There is no doubt that the French had good reason to fall in love with the snow-covered landscapes by Thaulow at the World’s Fair in 1889.