Portrait of Alfred Hage, 1836
Pencil, charcoal and black chalk on paper, 455 x 372 mm.
In this drawing, Constantin Hansen has used fine pencil strokes, charcoal and black chalk to portray the young Alfred Hage, father to Johannes Hage. The drawing’s composition is dominated by a general simplicity and tranquility that is characteristic of many of the artist’s portraits from around 1830. A strong source of light from the left illuminates his face and highlights the folds and texture of his coat. The forward-looking and focused gaze indicates a young man who is full of ambition. A few years prior to the painting of this portrait, Alfred Hage had become the holder of one of Denmark’s largest trading houses. He would later become an enterprising landowner, merchant and politician.Download Photo »
Constantin Hansen (1804-1880)
Constantin Hansen received his initial training from his father, Heinrich Hansen, who was a portrait painter. Later, he studied under C.W. Eckersberg and his paintings became more classical in composition with tight, symmetrical structuring. Constantin Hansen was an excellent colourist and in many of his sketches, he anticipated the colour handling and painterly technique of the Impressionists. In 1860-64, he carried out the huge painting The Danish Constitutional Assembly, which now hangs at Frederiksborg Museum. The painting was commissioned by Johannes Hage’s father, Alfred Hage, and hung in the dining room at the family’s home in Harsdorff’s Palace on Kongens Nytorv (no. 3, the white palace to the right of Charlottenborg).