19 July, 2024


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ACADEMY (Académies): Osmar Schindler – Germany – 1888

Osmar Schindler was a well-regarded German painter belonging to the status conscious and highly prestigious, Dresden Academy school of artists (poets, writers, and painters). Many of his diverse works are considered a mixture of Impressionism and Art Nouveau.


Osmar shows a typical academic art class and model scenario from the 1880s. The class is in Dresden or Berlin, possibly Amsterdam. The model, a local farmer and physique champion. Rumored to be a strongman for the circus. The young man later married and moved to Frankfurt and became a member of the local fire brigade.

Osmar shows the male students professional and platonic study of the “alpha male,” in all his glory. The stares are on how to capture the best painting for the best grade. The students are selecting the pose. The model did semi-clothed and then would go nude to posing strap. Posing strap was normally required in conservative Dresden, whereas classes in Amsterdam, Paris, and Berlin would be open to the full nudity. The goal of the students in the portrait is to capture the man’s masculinity as it relates to the academic ideals of manhood originating from antiquity. 

The classes were segregated by sex. Female students weren’t allowed in conservative Dresden, and only could paint female academic models or shirtless males. Sad, but true. 

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