KYHN, Vilhelm
(b. 1819, København, d. 1903, Frederiksberg)


Danish painter, etcher and draughtsman. He first studied etching, and in 1836 entered the Kongelige Akademi for de Skønne Kunster in Copenhagen, where he studied until 1843. His work mainly consists of landscape paintings and etchings. He travelled extensively within Denmark, being especially fond of the green and undulating countryside of Zealand and mid-Jutland with its calm lakes and inlets. September at the Mill of Rye, Lake Birk (1886; Copenhagen, Hirschsprungske Samling) has a solitary angler in a boat in the foreground, but as a rule Kyhn's landscapes are without figures. Influenced by the current of National Romanticism associated with an earlier generation (Johan Thomas Lundbye, Peter Christian Skovgaard), Kyhn wanted his subject-matter to be unmistakably Danish, and meticulously chose time, place and weather to evoke the requisite moods and associations. Stillness and lyricism are among Kyhn's finest qualities, but his stubbornly academic outlook may have hampered a broader painterly talent. He founded the 'Cavern Academy' in his garden studio, a forerunner of the 'Free Art Schools', where the strongest emphasis was placed on painting and drawing from life. Anna Ancher was one of his pupils in the drawing classes he held for women.

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