Kitty Lange Kielland

Early life and training

Kielland was born to an affluent family in Stavanger, the older sister of Alexander Kielland
Alexander Kielland
Alexander Lange Kielland was one of the most famous Norwegian realistic writers of the 19th century. He is one of the so-called "The Four Greats" in Norwegian literature, along with Henrik Ibsen, Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson and Jonas Lie.-Background:Born in Stavanger, Norway, he grew up in a rich...

. Kielland's mutual interactions with her brother would be important to shaping her as an artist. Although she received some training in drawing and painting, it was not until she turned thirty that she was allowed to train as a professional artist. In 1873 she traveled to Karlsruhe
The City of Karlsruhe is a city in the southwest of Germany, in the state of Baden-Württemberg, located near the French-German border.Karlsruhe was founded in 1715 as Karlsruhe Palace, when Germany was a series of principalities and city states...

 where she was trained by Hans Gude
Hans Gude
Hans Fredrik Gude was a Norwegian romanticist painter and is considered along with Johan Christian Dahl to be one of Norway's foremost landscape painters...

. As a woman Kielland was forced to take private lessons from Gude instead of joining his landscape painting class. Gude's adherence to realism left a lasting impression on Kielland that was visible in her later works. Kielland made rapid progress during the two years she spent training with Gude.


Kielland left Karlsruhe for Munich
Munich The city's motto is "" . Before 2006, it was "Weltstadt mit Herz" . Its native name, , is derived from the Old High German Munichen, meaning "by the monks' place". The city's name derives from the monks of the Benedictine order who founded the city; hence the monk depicted on the city's coat...

 in 1875 where she joined a colony of Norwegian artists living there. In Munich she studied with French-inspired realist
Realism (visual arts)
Realism in the visual arts is a style that depicts the actuality of what the eyes can see. The term is used in different senses in art history; it may mean the same as illusionism, the representation of subjects with visual mimesis or verisimilitude, or may mean an emphasis on the actuality of...

 Hermann Baisch, and with Norwegian Eilif Peterssen
Eilif Peterssen
Hjalmar Eilif Emanuel Peterssen was a Norwegian painter.-Background:Hjalmar Eilif Emanuel Peterssen was born in Christiania, now Oslo, Norway. He grew up in the neighborhood of Hegdehaugen in the district of Frogner.He attended the Johan Fredrik Eckersberg School of Painting in Oslo in 1869...

 whom some consider to be her most important teacher. Kielland lived in Munich until 1878.


In 1876 Kielland visited Jæren
Jæren is a traditional district in the county of Rogaland. The others are Dalane, Ryfylke and Haugalandet.Jæren is the largest flat lowland area in Norway, stretching from the municipality of Randaberg in the north to Hå in the south. The coast is flat compared to the rest of the Norwegian coast,...

 in southern Norway. Kielland's former teacher Hans Gude had visited Jæren in 1869 and 1872 and upon his return had suggested to her that she should travel there and paint it. Kielland prepared studies while she was in Jæren and later used these to paint the characteristically flat landscape when she returned to Munich, making her the first artist to do so. Her painting of Jæren shows a realistic depiction of the landscape, but with unifying atmospheric effects. Kielland returned to Jæren regularly during the summers, and so the monotonous landscape and peat bogs of the area became one of her favorite motifs. Kielland said that she was so interested in the area around Jæren because of "the grandeur of the landscape and the wealth of poverty". The skill with which the landscape was executed marks her as one of Gude's most outstanding students.


In 1879 Kielland moved to Paris
Paris is the capital and largest city in France, situated on the river Seine, in northern France, at the heart of the Île-de-France region...

, and exhibited
Art exhibition
Art exhibitions are traditionally the space in which art objects meet an audience. The exhibit is universally understood to be for some temporary period unless, as is rarely true, it is stated to be a "permanent exhibition". In American English, they may be called "exhibit", "exposition" or...

 her paintings for the first time. Kielland was briefly a pupil of the landscape painter Léon Germain Pelouse
Léon Germain Pelouse
Léon Germain Pelouse was a French painter born in Pierrelaye .-External links:*...

 who lived in nearby Cernay-la-Ville
Cernay-la-Ville is a commune in the Yvelines department in the Île-de-France region in north-central France.-References:*...

. Kielland left Paris in 1889.

Later life and death

Kielland worked on simplifying her art in the 1890s under the influence of Jens Ferdinand Willumsen
Jens Ferdinand Willumsen
Jens Ferdinand Willumsen was a Danish artist who was associated with the movements of Symbolism and Expressionism. Although he was Danish, Willumsen lived almost half of his life in France...


Kielland participated eagerly in public debates regrading women's rights
Women's rights
Women's rights are entitlements and freedoms claimed for women and girls of all ages in many societies.In some places these rights are institutionalized or supported by law, local custom, and behaviour, whereas in others they may be ignored or suppressed...


Kielland painted little towards the end of her life. She suffered from senile dementia for several years, and finally died in Kristiania
Oslo is a municipality, as well as the capital and most populous city in Norway. As a municipality , it was established on 1 January 1838. Founded around 1048 by King Harald III of Norway, the city was largely destroyed by fire in 1624. The city was moved under the reign of Denmark–Norway's King...

 in 1914.

A street in Bærum
is a municipality in Akershus county, Norway. The administrative centre of the municipality is the town of Sandvika. Bærum was established as a municipality on 1 January 1838. A suburb of Oslo, Bærum is located on the west coast of the city....

, a suburb west of Oslo
Oslo is a municipality, as well as the capital and most populous city in Norway. As a municipality , it was established on 1 January 1838. Founded around 1048 by King Harald III of Norway, the city was largely destroyed by fire in 1624. The city was moved under the reign of Denmark–Norway's King...

, is named for her.

External links

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