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Collection of the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum

Julius Eduard Wilhelm Helfft

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Julius Edward wilhelm Helfft, a painter of landscapes and architecture, studied at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste, Berlin, and with the landscape painter Johann Wilhelm Schirmer (1807–1863) of the Düsseldorf Kunstakademie. Helfft exhibited at the Berlin Akademie from 1844 and later served as Royal Professor. He was commissioned by King Friedrich Wilhelm IV to make a series of views of Florence and its environs in 1843–47. He also traveled to Rome, Naples, and Sicily, and returned to Italy regularly to continue sketching, producing a series of views in the late 1850s. Later in life, Helfft was forced to stop painting because of an eye injury. He left the Berlin Akademie a number of his sketches and studies as well as money to establish a scholarship for landscape painters. (JGK)