|'Portrait of the Actress Johanne Luise Heiberg' (1841) by Emilius Ditlev Bærentzen; Thorvaldsens Museum, Copenhagen|
I found a Danish painter for today, Emil Bærentzen, born on 30 October 1799. He was a portrait painter and active during the Golden Age of Danish Painting. He studied at the Danish Academy and soon became one of Copenhagens's leading portraitists. His paintings were characterised by a sober style, like today's painting. The dress is elegant but simple, and all attention is being drawn to the woman's face and her smile. Bærentzen was commissioned by Bertel Thorvaldsen to do a portrait on the famous Danish actress Johanne Luise Heiberg. With this commission, Thorvaldsen would have a portrait of his favourite actress ánd a painting by Bærentzen in his collection. The painting is to be seen at the Thorvaldsens Museum in Copenhagen. I have done a post on another Danish painter, Wilhelm Marstrand, who also painted a portrait of the actress. Click here and see which one you like better (I like the Marstrand one better).