Emil Jakob Schindler

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Emil Jakob Schindler
Emil Jakob Schindler Porträt.jpg
Born April 27, 1842 (1842-04-27)
Died August 9, 1892 (1892-08-10) (aged 50)

Emil Jakob Schindler (1842-1892) was an Austrian landscape painter.


He was born into a family of manufacturers that had been established in Lower Austria since the 17th Century. He was supposed to pursue a career in the military, but rejected that for a career in the arts. In 1860, he entered the Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna, where he studied with Albert Zimmermann.[1] He found his models, however, in the Dutch Masters such as Meindert Hobbema and Jacob Izaaksoon van Ruisdael. In 1873, he travelled to Venice, followed by trips to Dalmatia and Holland.[1]

In 1875, he married the operetta singer Anna von Bergen (1857–1938), who may have been pregnant at the time of the wedding. Their financial situation was somewhat desperate and they had to share an apartment with a colleague of Schindler's, Julius Victor Berger. While still living there, they gave birth to a daughter who would later become famous as Alma Mahler. During a period when Emil was absent due to an illness, Anna began an affair with Berger. It is believed that her daughter Margarethe (Grete, born in 1880), was actually his.[2]

Anna von Bergen with Alma (right) and Grete (c.1890)

Later successes[edit]

In 1881, he won the Reichel Prize,[3] which came with a cash award of 1,500 Gulden, enabling the family to rent their own apartment. Winning the prize also served to attract clients and their financial condition continued to improve. After 1885, he spent his summers at the artists colony in Plankenberg Castle near Neulengbach.[3] He had several students there, including Marie Egner, Tina Blau, Olga Wisinger-Florian and Luise Begas-Parmentier. Two years later, he received a commission from Rudolf, Crown Prince of Austria to sketch the coastal towns in Dalmatia and Greece, as part of a project called "The Austro-Hungarian Monarchy in Words and Pictures" (24 volumes).[3] That same year, he became an honrary member of the Vienna Academy.[1] In 1888, the Munich Academy followed suit.

His private life was less fortunate. Although his wife had ended her affair with Berger, she soon began another, secretly, with Schindler's assistant Carl Moll,[2] who she would marry three years after Schindler's death.

He died as the result of appendicitis,[4] which he had left untreated for too long while on vacation. The city of Vienna gave him an "Ehrengrab" (Honor Grave) at the Zentralfriedhof, designed by the sculptor Edmund von Hellmer. Three years later, Hellmer created a statue of him for the Stadtpark.[1] A street in the Währing District is named after him.

Selected landscapes[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d * Friedrich Pollak. (1908), "Schindler, Emil Jakob", Allgemeine Deutsche Biographie (ADB) (in German) 54, Leipzig: Duncker & Humblot, pp. 16–17 
  2. ^ a b Brief biography of Bergen @ Alma Mahler website.
  3. ^ a b c G. Frodl: "Schindler, Emil Jakob". In: Österreichisches Biographisches Lexikon 1815–1950 (ÖBL). Vol. 10, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna 1994, ISBN 3-7001-2186-5, p. 148 f. (Direct links to "p. 148", "p. 149")
  4. ^ Brief biography @ Niederösterreich Museum

Further reading[edit]

  • Agnes Husslein-Arco, Alexander Klee (eds.), Emil Jakob Schindler, Poetischer Realismus, Munich 2012, Hirmer Verlag, ISBN 978-3-7774-2014-1
  • Carl Moll: Emil Jakob Schindler 1842-1892. Eine Bildnisstudie. Österreichische Staatsdruckerei, Vienna 1930.
  • Peter Weninger, Peter Müller: Die Schule von Plankenberg. Emil Jakob Schindler und der österreichische Stimmungsimpressionismus. Akademische Druck- und Verlagsanstalt, Graz 1991 ISBN 3-201-01537-7.
  • Agnes Husslein-Arco, Alexander Klee: Emil Jakob Schindler. Poetischer Realismus, Exhibition catalog, Meisterwerke im Focus, Österreichische Galerie Belvedere, Vienna 2012, Hirmer Verlag GmbH, München, ISBN 978-3-7774-2014-1

External links[edit]