KRØYER, Peter Severin
(b. 1851, Stavanger, d. 1909, Skagen)

Hip Hip Hooray! An Artists' Party at Skagen

Oil on canvas, 135 x 166 cm
Konstmuseum, Gothenburg

Around 1870, growing numbers of Scandinavian (Danish, Finnish, Norwegian and Swedish) artists took to visiting Paris, the modern metropolis with its many-sided art scene. They attended the school of Léon Bonnat, or the Académie Julian, or the Académie Colarossi. Some of them were tutored by Jean-Léon Gérôme. When summer arrived and tuition ceased at the private schools in Paris, the artists deserted the city. The coast of Brittany was especially popular for painting holidays. In the 1880s, there was a Swedish artists' colony at Grèz-sur-Loing, by the Fontainebleau woods.

In due course the artists took the idea of the artists' colony back to Scandinavia with them. The most famous of the northern colonies was at Skagen in Denmark. Many Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish artists returned there every summer, to paint in the fine northern light in the company of friends old and new.

The composition of this painting was based on a photograph taken in summer 1884. The party was in the garden of the Anchers (husband and wife were both artist) at Skagen. We see the artists raising their champagne glasses in a toast. The motif of movement captured in the male group is nicely complemented by the tranquillity of the seated women and the child.

© Web Gallery of Art, created by Emil Krén and Daniel Marx.