COPIES AFTER OTHER ARTISTS
Like many nineteenth-century artists trained in Munich and Paris, copying the works of other artists was an acceptable form of artistic practice and the achievements of artists like Raphael, Titian and Velasquez were seen as the fashionable exemplars for artists to copy. From the young Adolfo Müller’s time in the studio of Deschwanden in the 1870s, during his time in Rome in 1882-4, and later, when as Muller-Ury his career in New York had become increasingly successful, he continued copying the works of artists whose works he felt might assist his artistic progress. He is known to have copied the Corot in the collection of his first important American patron James J. Hill of St. Paul, and in 1911 and 1913 he was documented in American Art News as in Madrid, at the Prado, copying the works of Velasquez. Some of his copies he hung in his New York studio as the singer Jessica Dragonette records in her autobiography: ‘On the walls were several copies of paintings by Velasquez: Don Carlos on horseback and the artist painting the infanta. Muller-Ury had copied the pictures in Spain and kept them as technical reference.’ Alas, these particular pictures were sold in his studio sale after his death, and have disappeared, but a number of copies by him have survived.
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