Two Orientalist paintings of Arabian horsemen by Ad. Schreyer

By Schreyer, Adolf (German, 1828-1899)


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Painted by Adolf Schreyer c.1860, during his time in North Africa and the Middle East, these exceptional pieces constitute a fine pair of Orientalist artworks. They depict, in both cases, Arabian horsemen, the first, a pair setting off into a beautiful rocky desert landscape, the other, a horseman with a pair of steeds by a well.

Adolf Schreyer was a highly regarded German painter in the mid-19th century, associated with the Düsseldorf school of art and German Romanticism. The most successful and largest part of his oeuvre consists of the paintings he executed of Bedouin men and their horses, while travelling through Algiers, Egypt, and Syria. 

He studied at the Düsseldorf Academy under Wilhelm von Schadow, a very fine portrait and religious artist, but became enfatuated with Arabic culture and life in the near East, learning Arabic, and painting numerous scenes of horsemen, riders, desert scenes and landscapes, in a period of travel that included tenure as an official wartime-artist.

His paintings are remarkable for their excellent compositions, rich colour palettes and skilful use of light and shadow, and the superb way Schreyer rendered the lifeforce and atmosphere of the riders, horses, and landscapes in his art. His works convey a strikingly forceful sense of statement, much loved by French and American collectors in particular, but today they are the ideal pair of works for anyone with a love of Orientalist, landscape, or indeed Romantic 19th century painting in general.

Both are oil-on-canvas in a carved giltwood frame, and signed, one to the lower right, the other to the lower left, 'Ad. Schreyer.' One (that of the two horsemen) is also set on a masonite board.

Frames: height 84cm, width 70cm, depth 4.5cm
First canvas (two horsemen): height 65cm, width 54cm
Second canvas (horses at a well): height 66cm, width 51cm.


Artist / Maker
By Schreyer, Adolf (German, 1828-1899)
Country of Origin
Date of Manufacture
19th Century
Equestrian / Horses, Landscape, Orientalist, Romantic
Oil on Canvas, Panel


84 cm / 33.1 inches
70 cm / 27.6 inches
4.5 cm / 1.6 inches


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