Theodor Kern (Austrian, 1900-1969); An Oil on Board Portrait of Two Young Gentlemen c.1940

Origin: British
Period: Early/Mid Twentieth Century
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.1935-45
Width: 14.25”
Height: 19.75”

The unframed oil on board showing two youths or young males depicted cropped, the larger sitter shown looking out to the viewer, with the second figure with his eyes closed, the background showing a large industrial type building, awash with a sea green, painted by Theodor Kern in the second quarter of the twentieth century.

In entirely original condition the work does not have any restorations or flaws to note. It is unframed and unsigned. There are some light scratch marks to the upper mid section.
The palette used here is soft, with an abundance of pastille and earthy shades, the brush strokes can clearly be seen, the work probably finished quite quickly and the style is very much in keeping with style of portraiture in the 1930s and 40s.

Theodor Kern was an Austrian artist, born in 1900, who studied in Europe before settling in Bearton Green, Hitchin, where he lived until his death in 1969. As well as being a former teacher at Luton School of Art, Kern produced a wealth of paintings in a huge range of styles and subjects, including self portraits, still life, landscapes and cubism. He developed a good relationship with Luton Museum’s then curator Peter Smith. After Kern’s death he bequeathed part of his studio works to Wardown Park Museum.

A serene picture with an arresting balance between the wide-eyed and that of the closed.