Catherine Estes has given us this beautiful article about one of the most famous and skilled painters of hunting scenes in the old Russia.
Born to a modest German shopkeeper and his wife in Berlin, Rudolf Fedorovich Frenz entered this world on October 2, 1831, and graduated from the Berlin Academy of Arts either in 1854 or 1859. Between 1869/1870, he moved to Russia, where his depiction of grand hunting scenes and animal paintings would begin. His affiliation with members of the Royal Family and the upper echelon enabled him to accompany them on travels and hunting expeditions, and committing these scenes to paper and canvas. Frents' prestigious patrons included the Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich, emperors Alexander II, Alexander III, and Nicholas I. His realistic artworks included, but are not limited to: "Portrait of the Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich on the Hunt" (1867), "Cozy Corner" (1884), "Halt of the Hunters", "Family of Chickens" (1885), and "The Hunters" (1887). Frenz' paintings can be found in many museums such as the State Museum of Fine Arts of the Republic of Tatarstan, the State Russian Museum, and the Mordovian Republican Museum of Fine Arts named after S.D. Erzi, along with private collections.
In 1884, Frenz became a Russian citizen, and in 1885, he received the title of Honorary Free Communion of the St. Petersburg Academy of Arts followed with Honorary Citizenship awarded in 1904. In 1912, he became an academician of the Imperial Academy of Arts.
His artwork was exhibited worldwide to include Paris, Philadelphia, Berlin, Chicago, Odessa, Kharkov, Yekaterinburg, Riga, Kiev, and Kazan.
Rudolf Fedorovich Frenz died on December 24, 1918, at age 87.
Frenz' artistic talent continued by way of his son, Rudolf Rudolfovich Frenz (1888-1956), who became a famous battle painter, a professor of the Academy of Arts, one of the Soviet Battle painting, and the author of the panorama "Battle of Stalingrad."