+32 478 22 65 64 | info@valentinasafarian.com

Wegmann Bertha

Soglio, Switzerland 1847 – 1926 Copenhagen

Danish Painter

Portrait of a Woman in White Dress

Signature: Signed top left
Medium: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: Image size 100 x 75 cm, frame size 143 x 115 cm

Wegmann Bertha, born on December 16, 1847, in Soglio, Switzerland, was a Danish portrait painter with Swiss roots, leaving an indelible mark on the art world.

At the age of five, Wegmann’s family relocated to Copenhagen, Denmark, where her father’s passion for art influenced her early interest in drawing. However, she received no formal education until the age of nineteen when she commenced lessons from notable artists such as Frederik Ferdinand Helsted, Heinrich Buntzen, and Frederik Christian Lund.

Embarking on a journey to pursue her artistic aspirations, Wegmann moved to Munich in 1866 and resided there until 1881. Her quest for authentic artistic expression led her to study directly from nature, initially under the guidance of Wilhelm von Lindenschmit the Younger and later with Eduard Kurzbauer. During her Munich years, she developed a close friendship with Swedish painter Jeanna Bauck and undertook study trips to Italy, expanding her artistic horizons.

In 1881, Wegmann and Bauck relocated to Paris, where she exhibited at various salons, earning her an “honorable mention.” Returning to Copenhagen the next year, she had already gained recognition through exhibitions at Charlottenborg Palace since 1873. Her exceptional talent was further highlighted when a portrait of her sister received the prestigious Thorvaldsen Medal in 1883.

A trailblazer for women in art, Wegmann achieved a historic milestone in 1887 by becoming the first woman to hold a chair at the Royal Danish Academy. Her influence extended to the “Tegne- og Kunstindustriskolen for Kvinder” (Drawing and Art School for Women), where she served on the board from 1887 to 1907.

Wegmann’s artistic journey continued with widespread exhibitions, and she proudly represented Denmark at various world’s fairs, including the World’s Columbian Exhibition in Chicago.

Her passion for art persisted until her sudden passing on February 22, 1926, while working in her studio in Copenhagen. Bertha Wegmann’s legacy endures as a pioneering figure in the realm of portrait painting and a trailblazer for women in the arts.

In 2022, the painting "Portrait of a Woman in White Dress" by Bertha Wegmann was featured in the prestigious exhibition "Woman with Attitude" at Campo & Campo, Belgium's oldest auction house and gallery. The exhibition aimed to shed light on the historical underrepresentation of women artists. During the investigation into the painting's rich history, it became evident that women artists faced significant challenges and inequality, as they were denied entry to academies and confined by traditional gender roles that limited opportunities for artistic expression. The project served as a journey through time, highlighting the struggles and restrictions faced by women in the art world.

    Request For More Information

    Go to Top