Laurits Tuxen was a Danish painter known primarily for painting figures. He was a member of the Skagen Painters, a group of Scandinavian artists who gathered in the village of Skagen, in northern Denmark. To royal watchers, however, he is famous for his portraits of European royals, including Queen Victoria, Tsar Nicholas, and the Danish royal family of Christian IX. He painted both the marriages of George V and Nicholas and Alexandra.
The most famous royal portrait by Tuxen was that of the family of Christian IX, often known either as the father-in-law or grandfather of Europe. The family included a king, queen, tsar, tsarina, and a pack of princes and princesses. A psychologist would find the placement of the royals fascinating – note that Tsar Alexander III and Tsarina Maria Feodorovna are centerstage, eclipsing the King and Queen of Denmark, who sit to their left – while the Prince and Princess of Wales are relegated to the far left side. The Wales daughters are in a group with their cousins in the far right. The group is painted in the Havesalen of Fredensborg Palace.
If you want to delve deeply into the players here, this blog post by Gods and Foolish Grandeur lays it all out in detail. You can see the photos used for reference and close-ups of the painting itself. Typical for paintings of this size and this era, there are preparatory ‘sketches’ and smaller versions of the larger painting in existence.
Tuxen painted many famous portraits, royal and otherwise. Spam your Tuxen paintings in the comments, or just give us your thoughts on the ones we have featured in the post.