Elisabeth Jerichau-Baumann

Elisabeth Jerichau-Baumann was a Polish-Danish painter, best known for her famous painting Mother Denmark (1851, The Glyptotek).

She was born in Poland but left the country aged 19. After having spent time in Germany, where she attended the Academy of Arts in Düsseldorf, she moved to Rome in 1845. Here she met the Danish sculptor Jens Adolf Jerichau. The married in 1846 and moved to Denmark three years later.

Elisabeth Jerichau-Baumann was very prolific and painted many portraits, e.g. Johanne Louise Heiberg (1852, State Museum of Art) and historical genre pieces such as A Wounded Danish Warrior (1865, State Museum of Art). Inspired from travels to North Africa and Turkey she also painted several Orientalist pieces of women and harems.

She did not receive the acknowledgement in Denmark that she longed for but had great succes abroad, with several large exhibitions in various European cities. In her memoirs Memories of my Youth (1874) and Varied Travel Images (1881), Elisabeth Jerichau-Baumann tells about her life as a woman and an artist, two conditions that were difficult to combine during her lifetime.