Description & Technical information

Dated 1857, this small oil sketch is a view of the coastal rock formation of Randkløve Skår on the east coast of the Baltic island of Bornholm. Located southeast of the town and fishing port of Gudhjem, which Fauerholdt painted often, Randkløve Skår is a natural cleft or ravine in the rock cliff face, shaped by the movements of ice over millions of years.

As the author of a 19th century American guidebook noted, ‘The scenery and geological nature of Bornholm differ so essentially from the other parts of Denmark – wild coasts, and picturesque rocks but a few hundred feet above sea-level…A walk should be taken to a wild spot on the coast – Randklöveskaaret, east of Österlarsker...’ The precise location of this coastal view can be determined as a little north of the small fishing village of Ypnasted. Today the coastline at Randkløve Skår is much less barren than it appears in this oil sketch, since sheep are no longer grazed on the cliffs and the landscape is now heavily overgrown with vegetation.

The present sheet is a study for the left edge of one of Viggo Fauerholdt’s best-known early paintings; a much larger and more panoramic view of Randkløve Skår and the east coast of Bornholm, also dated 1857, that is today in the collection of the Bornholms Konstmuseum. The painting, which was probably exhibited in 1858 at the Kunstakadamiet in the Charlottenborg Palace in Copenhagen, was acquired by the museum on Bornholm in 1985. Another painting of the coast of Bornholm by Fauerholdt is in the collection of the Deutsches Schifffahrtsmuseum (the German Maritime Museum) in Bremerhaven.

The mount of this oil sketch bears the drystamp of the 19th century Danish collector Benjamin Wolff (1790-1866), with whose descendants it remained for over 150 years.
Inscribed and dated W. Fauerholt del 1857. on the mount.

Date:  1857
Period:  19th century
Medium: Oil on paper
Dimensions: 238 x 175 cm (93³/₄ x 68⁷/₈ inches)
Provenance: Benjamin Wolff, Engelholm, Denmark (Lugt 420), with his drystamp on the mount
Thence by descent in the Wolff Sneedorf family until 2018.

Categories: Paintings, Drawings & Prints