View of Riga
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Ulrihs Boitmanis ( Latvian, Nineteenth Century )
Although little is known about Ulrihs Boitmanis, there is a significant group of paintings that date from the late 1880s and early 1890s all of which depict different views or landmarks of Riga, for example his depiction of the House of Dannenstern, one of Latvia’s best examples of Baroque architecture. Boitmanis’ urban landscapes all feature the same cool palette and precise, detailed observation of Riga’s architecture. Figures are used to animate his scenes but are invariably dwarfed by their surroundings. One potential reason that so little is currently known about Boitmanis is that his name has been transcribed incorrectly from his paintings: his first name has on occasion thought to have started with ‘a’ or ‘j’. However, the Latvian art historian Romis Böhm (1927-1933) discovered references to a city landscape painter called Ulrihs Boitmann, and concluded this must be the painter of the group of exceptional Riga landscapes.