Object Image

Toning the Bell

Like many artists of his generation, Walter Shirlaw furthered his training in Europe, studying at the Royal Academy in Munich. German instruction focused on a dark, painterly realism and was steeped in an astute understanding of aesthetic traditions. In Toning the Bell, executed during his student years and now considered his best-known work, the artist demonstrated an accomplished Munich style, featuring noble peasants, a limited tonal palette, and strong contrasts of light and dark. Prior to his time abroad, Shirlaw had worked in Chicago and helped establish the Chicago Academy of Design, a forerunner to the Art Institute of Chicago.

Credit: Friends of American Art Collection...

1874
Oil on canvas
101.6 x 76.2cm
1938.1280
Image and text courtesy of Art Institute of Chicago, 2019

Where you'll find this

Art Institute of Chicago
Permanent collection