Beach scene with bomb barges, 1846
After a day‘s work at sea, the fishermen unload their catch on the Danish coast. The dark sky receding in the background gives the impression that the work was done under stormy conditions. The evening sun bathes the hustle and bustle on the beach in a golden warm tone. In the left half of the picture, a crowd of people is forming and the flatfish they caught are lying on the sand in front of them. Another fish is being brought by a man from the ship towards the gathered coastal people, who are haggling over the fresh goods. At that time, it is customary for the catch to be auctioned off immediately after unloading. The composition is dominated by towering bomb barges, which originate in the Netherlands and spread as far as Scandinavia. This type of vessel is mainly used by coastal fishermen and has a shallow draft due to its flat bottom. Thus, they can navigate waters close to the coast and leave and moor on the beach with the tides. The bomb barges are mainly used to catch flatfish hiding under the sand of the sea.
The Danish painter Viggo Fauerholdt is born in Copenhagen and studies at the art academy there from the age of 14. In 1857 and 1861 he wins the Neuhausen Prize and becomes active in Düsseldorf in 1865. Originally he intends to stay there only temporarily, but then he remains in the city until the end of his life. He probably saw in the circle of the famous Düsseldorf School of Painting the opportunity to bring the quality of his painting into line with European developments in art.