Who was Franz Roubaud and to which national school of painting should we say his art belongs? Franz Roubaud was born into a French family in Odessa and kept his French citizenship until 1914. French was his mother tongue. His surviving correspondence allows us to see that Roubaud’s Russian was good, although in one letter to the Vice-President of the Academy of Arts, Ivan Tolstoy, the artist apologises for the fact that he must express his thoughts in French because his Russian is insufficient for describing the full delicacy of the issue. Over the course of his many years living in Munich the artist acquired good German, although he did have an accent when he spoke. In the Roubaud household in Munich Italian was also sometimes spoken (the artist’s second wife was Austrian). Finally, we must assume some knowledge of Polish also: as a young man Roubaud spent some time in Poland, and when he was in Munich, having entered Józef (Joseph) von Brandt’s private school, he attached himself to the circle of Polish artists there. When he was interned as an enemy alien at the beginning of the First World War, Roubaud took German citizenship. It is impossible to imagine Roubaud’s art, his choice of themes or his individual style without taking into account the Munich school. But, nevertheless, Roubaud referred to himself as a Russian artist: …I was born in Russia and lived there for more than 22 years, it is where I received my education, I paint exclusively pictures of Russian day-to-day and military life; all these signs suggest that I should be considered a Russian artist.
Franz Roubaud was a talented child, and in his cultured, although not well-off, family, this was recognised in good time: his parents sent him to the Odessa School of Drawing the year it was opened (1865). All we know about these years in the future artist’s life is that his teacher at the Odessa School of Drawing was its director, Friedrich Malman, and that for some reason Roubaud broke off his studies for two years. It is possible that it was at the Odessa School of Drawing that Roubaud first heard about the Bavarian Academy of Fine Arts: after 1869 one of the teachers there was a Munich alumnus, Anton Bauer. However, the decisive influence on the young artist’s choice of career was, most likely, the trip he took with his parents to Tbilisi (then called Tiflis) in the 1870s: it was there that he became acquainted with the vivid mark made in the cultural life of Tbilisi by the Munich painter Theodor Horschelt (1829 - 1871).
Horschelt’s life story was impressive: a wandering artist, he had abandoned his studies at the Bavarian Academy of Fine Arts in order to make his dreams about the Caucasus come true and had spent five years there in the Russian army (1858-1863). Horschelt took part in military operations, including in such historic events as the taking of the aul (fortified Caucasian village) of Gunib on 25. August 1859. His personal valour brought him Russian medals. Horschelt had a brilliant career: he worked in Tiflis on commissions from Alexander II’s Viceroy in the Caucasus, Alexander Baryatinsky, and accompanied the tsar for two weeks during his trip around the Caucasus in 1861. In 1863 Horschelt visited Petersburg, where he was elected an honorary member of the Imperial Academy of the Arts. On his return to Munich he completed his paintings on Caucasian themes, The Taking of the Aul of Gunib and The Capture of Chamil, and showed both with great success, at the International Exhibition in Paris in 1867 and in Munich in 1869 respectively.
However, Horschelt did not only paint historical scenes. We get a complete picture of Georgia and the Northern Caucasus in this period from his many drawings and his many paintings showing such scenes as The Crossing of a Mountain River, Cossacks Returning with Prisoners after a Raid, and from his depictions of eastern bazaars and mountain-men on horseback. These themes would later be used by Roubaud: if Horschelt was the painter of the Caucasus during the epoch of Alexander II, then Roubaud was his successor in the era of Alexander III. Roubaud also adopted Horschelt’s method: painting a picture on the basis of real impressions, multiple studies and quick sketches from nature, portraits of mountaineers, groups of animals, views of auls.1 Finally, Roubaud also inherited Horschelt’s ethics: never take sides, even in commissioned work. Like his German predecessor, Roubaud would depict to an equal degree the bravery of a Russian solider and the heroism of the mountain-men and show the clash of different forces and culminating moments of battles (hand-to-hand fighting, the storming of villages, etc.), without concealing the cruelty of war.
Evidently, this desire to follow in Horschelt’s footsteps also guaranteed the young artist the attention of the director of the Bavarian Academy, Karl von Piloty,2 who had previously been friends with Horschelt, and that of Luitpold, the Prince Regent of Bavaria, as well as, ultimately, that of the Russian court, which is explained by the fact the young artist received a special government order for pictures for the Tiflis Military History Museum, the so-called ‘Hall of Fame’.
Roubaud’s earliest surviving dated works are from 1881, when he was already living in Munich. These works are landscape and genre drawings, some of which reflect a trip taken by Roubaud to France, as well as several paintings depicting painters, peasants (we can say with certainty that the artist interprets these two subjects under the influence of his impressions of Poland, especially since the action takes place during the winter season), Zaporozhye Cossacks and oriental horseman. In essence, all of Roubaud’s thematic choices are already fully-formed in these works. The formation of the artist’s individual manner took somewhat longer than the selection of subject matter: if the drawings, which quickly came to be a separate part of Roubaud’s oeuvre, quickly began to show maturity, then his paintings, with their closed-off contours for figures and objects, evenly lit space and sharp shadows (obviously a consequence of Roubaud’s impressions of the south) would remain somewhat sophomoric up until the mid-1880s. What is more, neither the smooth painting style, nor the observation of academic rules on composition, nor even the use of subject matter from the past can hide the fact that Roubaud’s painting has a strong emotional foundation and is based above all on real-life impressions.
These impressions determine the subject matter both of The Mole in Yalta and of Streets in Yermolintsy (Governate of Podolia), the paintings which marked Roubaud’s first participation in an exhibition (1883, St. Petersburg). We can see some naivety in the proposal addressed by Roubaud to the Imperial Academy of the Arts which suggested that they should give him the title of academician for a painting depicting provincial, small town characters on a wet, rutted road: he should really have been glad that the painting was accepted for the exhibition at all.
Things were different with his ‘Horscheltian’ Caucasian subjects: they offered the prospect of success both in Petersburg and in Munich, an important centre of battle painting, where, however, pictures on Caucasian themes were painted, and then only from time to time, only by Józef von Brandt. And, indeed, Roubaud, made a career for himself as an artist very quickly. Having been forced to break off his studies in 1880 because of lack of funds, just six years later he began working on a commission for a large series of paintings depicting the conquest of the Caucasus.
Roubaud worked on the Caucasian series for more than ten years, and then repeated individual subjects from this commission, and also produced several pictures depicting the wars in the Caucasus which were unrelated to the cycle.3 Individual paintings from the cycle were shown in Munich and in Berlin, which contributed to the artist’s fame in Europe and showed him to be a worthy heir to Horschelt. The painting The Storming of Gunib and The Capture of Chamil can be seen as a sort of homage to the older artist: Roubaud uses a mirror-image of the composition used in Horshhelt’s The Capture of Chamil.
As they were created over the course of many years, the pictures of the Caucasian cycle demonstrate the evolution of Roubaud’s individual style. The early paintings in the series (The Defeat of the Persians near Elizavetpol, The Storming of the aul Achulgo) are marked by their conventional composition with many small figures, collected together and evenly distributed in the centre of the composition. They display more of the typical characteristics of battle painting in that period, including in the style, than they do Roubaud’s individual characteristics. It is telling that the repeat of the central part of the composition of The Defeat of the Persians near Elizavetpol was for a long time considered to be the work of Nikolai Samokish.4 However, Roubaud gradually becomes more self-confident and unique. He boldly shifts the centre of the composition, makes the enormous space of the picture itself the central expressive element (Prince Argutinsky-Dolgorukov passing the Caucasian range, Peter I. entering Tarki on August 13,1722). In other compositions, on the other hand, the drama of the event is reinforced by the fact that mass of people is squeezed into a narrow gorge in the mountains or among trees (Reconnaissance patrol in the Caucasus, The Taking of aul Dargo).
It was in the mid-1880s, and above all in Munich, that Roubaud began to attract the attention of art critics. He was written about both as a student of Brandt’s and as a Russian member of a Polish artistic circle (the same circle, however, despite all the specific qualities of Polish painting, belonged to the local school in Munich). Like Brandt, Roubaud was praised for his bravura painting style. Nevertheless, one important distinction between the works of Roubaud and of Brandt did not escape the leading Munich critic Friedrich Pecht: in Roubaud’s work the viewer is attracted not by the separate figures but by the action in general5, and in Roubaud’s painting the mass of people is more interesting that the individuals. It is this which makes Roubaud’s historical compositions more contemporary. His work marked the shift in the genre of battle painting from the traditional ‘history painting’ with the subject in the centre to a new understanding of what goes on in the action of a battle. It is telling that Roubaud is nearly the only member of his generation of artists who was able to get close to adequately conveying the terrible scale of the First World War (Dante and Virgil Mourning).
Roubaud really felt at home in Munich: in the late 19th century as many as three thousand artists lived in a city with a population comparable to that of Odessa. Here a member of the creative professions was, if not richer, then at least considerably more notable in society than in Petersburg. However, an emotional attachment to the country of his birth, and also the expectation of large commissions, constantly pulled Roubaud towards Russia. In 1894, in the hope of a solo show of his work in Petersburg, Roubaud refused attempts to organise exhibitions in Vienna and Berlin: clearly, success in Russia meant more to him. Overall, Roubaud managed to maintain a tricky balance between life in Germany and life in Russia and to leave a considerable impression in the art of both countries. Testimony to this is his work in organizing a Russian section at the international exhibitions in the Glass Palace in Munich, work which he began in 1897 and which lasted for many years, taking up a good deal of his time and energy. Roubaud did this at his own initiative and free of charge.6
If in his large commissioned paintings Roubaud was above all concerned with composition and paid attention to draughtsmanship, then in his smaller works, and especially in his studies and sketches, the genuine passions of an artist come into play. His ‘flavourful’ pictures provide a link to the Munich school of his period. Roubaud was far from the first to show the world of the steppes and southern mountains at Petersburg and Munich exhibitions, but he was, without doubt, the first who conveyed to the viewer the hot air with such immediacy. Roubaud likes the sun, the dusty road stamped down by horses, the hot stones and sand, and his favourite grey-yellow ‘steppe’ palette of tones7 which was inspired by his impressions as a child. He is not fascinated by exotica and avoids ‘the heady-scented Orient’ but rather depicts the harsh and dangerous surroundings which shape the character of his taciturn subjects. Only occasionally does solitude and the extremity of their surroundings drive Roubaud’s horseman to play a musical instrument or sing. The artist would remain true to his favourite colour palette throughout his entire career. It does, however, become more complex and expressive in the 1890s, when the artist moves to coloured undercoats and it also takes on a certain intensity in his later years.
Roubaud’s work is above all associated with the Caucasus. At first glance, the artist always paints the same thing. However, when you compare his paintings, it turns out that he never completely repeats himself, but rather every time paints a Circassian, a River Crossing or a Troika afresh. Some of Roubaud’s subjects, such as, for example, the music-making and singing horseman (a theme taken from Brandt), which were extremely popular for decades, were somewhat conventional. Roubaud, however, would just as often paint pictures which give us a chance to see inside the real life of Central Asia and the Caucasus: the bazaars, the resting caravans, the national sports. Overall, Roubaud’s easel work is marked by much greater thematic variety than at first seems to be the case. Roubaud is revealed to be an excellent landscapist, who could paint not only views of mountains, but also of rivers (The River Kuban) and the sea. He turned his attention to village scenes en plein air (such as Ploughing with Horses and Hey Harvest in France). In his later years new and seemingly unexpected subjects appear in Roubaud’s work, such as The Circus. Roubaud’s drawings display even more thematic and generic variety: in addition to landscapes, genre scenes, portraits and the depiction of animals, Roubaud shows himself here to be a caricaturist endowed with a generous proportion of (self)irony. Roubaud’s drawings contain a wide variety of graphic techniques and styles, from carefully developed compositions to sketches in which the motif is captured in only a few swift strokes (The Sail).
Roubaud’s portrait work deserves particular attention. Historical compositions and mounted figures seem not to suggest much interest in portraiture on the part of the artist, seeing as Roubaud only ever records two emotional states: an almost gloomy severity and an exaggerated pose of extreme tension. Indeed, it is clear that Roubaud was no great master of the commissioned portrait: evidence survives which suggests that he did not manage to achieve a sufficient likeness in his posthumous portrait of Alexander II’s Viceroy in the Caucasus Alexander Baryatinsky. It is clear that the official portrait did not suit Roubaud as a genre.8 As in landscape, in this genre his sketch-like works were incomparably more effective. Thus, in a hastily executed portrait of his friend the sculptor Vladimir Beklemishev Roubaud captures precisely the characteristic pose and facial expression of the professor and head of sculpture at the Academy of Arts. Roubaud’s portrait drawings leave a strong impression; notable among them is Djapai which sticks in the mind as the very image of a proud and free personality.
The facts of Roubaud’s biography paint a picture of him as an exceptionally hard-working man. From the mid-1880s right up until his final move to Munich in 1913 Roubaud’s life was an attempt to do the physically impossible. While he was dedicating his energies to his Caucasian cycle for a decade, he ultimately also completed a number of pictures in addition to the commission. The volume of Roubaud’s easel work, just like the intensity of his involvement in exhibitions, can only really be properly valued, when we consider that he was working consecutively on three panoramas from the beginning of the 1880s.
Roubaud clearly arrived at the idea of painting a panorama under the influence of his visit to France—then the leading country in the world in this field—and of his life in Munich, which had become a particular centre for panorama painting in Germany. It was home to the panorama painter Louis Braun.9 Nevertheless, Roubaud occupies a particular place among the panoramists of that era. In the late 19th century and early 20th century panoramas were seen both by members of the public and by artists themselves above all as an entrepreneurial undertaking designed to make money. This was the reason behind the founding of the Franco-Belgian joint-stock company, Société française des Grands Panoramas.10 For Roubaud, the financial success of his panoramas, despite the artist’s concerns, expressed in letters, about the chronic delays in financing, was clearly the least of his concerns. He remained the only artist who did not make money from his panoramas.11 The subjects of Roubaud’s panoramas were the most important events in national history; in this connection he had to go through tricky negotiations with high-ranking officials. The content of these negotiations bears witness to the fact that Roubaud consistently sought a compositional and plastic, which is to say, purely artistic, solution to the problem of capturing these events.12 Thus members of the Committee for the Restoration and Construction of Monuments of the Defence of Sebastopol proposed that he unites several episodes from different periods in the panorama The Storming on June 6, 1855. This would have led to a narrative work in the style of the outmoded academic conceptions about historical composition (with the location of the action framed by recognisable architectural features and with the crowd and the hero of the historic event in the centre) and—something which Roubaud reacted against particularly strongly—would have made The Storming on June 6, 1855 similar to the entertainment panoramas at the World’s Fair in Paris. With the help of his consultants Roubaud stood firm and stuck to the modern principle of depicting the events of one day (6. June 1855, when Russian troops won a victory against allied enemy forces).13 Similarly his surviving correspondence with Boris Koliubakin bears witness to the artist’s concern that the subject of the Battle of Borodino be revealed solely by artistic means.
Roubaud enjoyed the favour of the most important artists of the era: Ilya Repin spoke warmly of him, and his principal sponsor to become a full member of the Academy of Fine Arts was Arkhip Kouindji. Nonetheless, the public side of the artist’s life, which was distinguished by contacts at the highest levels of government, medals (which Roubaud, who was no stranger to vanity, particularly valued) and professorships, meant that the artist was not well-loved by his colleagues in the Imperial Academy of the Arts. That said, the surviving correspondence allows us to get to know the other side of Roubaud’s life, which seemed so brilliant on the outside: the painstaking struggle to receive a suitable space (for the panorama The Storming of Achulgo), his long battle with badly organised builders (for the panorama The Storming on 6. June 1855), the need to adapt to the demands of Nicholas II, even though these in no way improved the artistic concept of the panoramas (The Storming on June 6, 1855 and The Battle of Borodino). The pictures of the Caucasian cycle did not have a permanent exhibition space for long. That the artist spent many years working at the extremes of his physical capabilities is evident from the fact that he sent requests for a holiday to the Vice-President of the Academy of Fine Arts. Thus, at the end of 1904, knowing full well that it would make a bad impression, after he had finished working on The Storming on June 6, 1855 Roubaud was forced to head to Munich for a rest, without visiting Petersburg. Roubaud also had to come to terms with the prospect of no further use of his beloved panorama of Achulgo, for which no hanging space seemed available. Already at the fair in Nizhny Novgorod in 1896 this had cost him a great deal of effort. The panorama was kept rolled up, and as early as its showing in 1909 in Sebastopol and at the end of the same year in St. Petersburg it was necessary to restore it thoroughly. Achulgo was not installed again. We can assume that news also reached Roubaud of the fact that in 1917 Borodino ceased to exist as a museum. Finally, in the 1920s the artist was informed of the lamentable condition of The Storming on June 6, 1855, but could no longer travel to carry out the necessary restoration.
In 1903 Roubaud, who was not accustomed to refusing offers of work, became a teacher at the Higher School of Art at the Imperial Academy of Fine Arts. Fairly quickly this new role made him a target for the press (the mythical professor): busy with his panoramas, Roubaud was too often absent.14 It must be admitted that he really must accept some of the blame for the fact that the superbly equipped battle painting studio at the Imperial Academy of the Arts lost students. Nevertheless the memoirs of students at the Higher School of Art in those years (Mikhail Avilov, Isaak Brodsky, Pyotr Buchkin) paint a picture of an attentive and interested teacher.15 Roubaud tried to instil in his pupils the culture of quick, precise sketching which he considered so important and cut the time for induction down to one week (usually students’ induction lasted a month). Not having time for lessons with students on the premises of the Academy, he would give them a perhaps more valuable chance to plunge into the adult life of an artist: just as in Munich not only the experienced masters of the panorama team but also 20 students from the Bavarian Academy, so in Russia Roubaud involved his students K. E. Tir and I. Ia. Perelman in the installation of The Storming on 6. June 1855. The students also took part in the restoration of the panoramas The Storming of Achulgo and The Storming on June 6, 1855 for their showing on the Fields of Mars in Petersburg in 1909.
It is well-known that the students at Dmitry Kardovsky’s studio were remarkable in their extraordinary workload. However, Roubaud worked his students just as hard. And Roubaud, who at that time was barely worthy of his Academician title, was responsible for one of the most serious attempts to reform the conservative system of the preparation of artists at the Higher School of Art. Trying in part to model the Petersburg system on the creative atmosphere and ethics of Munich, which was at that time free and unbureaucratic, and in part motivated by his exceptional pedagogical idealism (we recall that Roubaud began his independent adult career as a teacher!), Roubaud wrote a constructive memo about reform. His main points were the abolition of residence by professors16 and the replacement of the studio system with permanent teachers, the introduction of paid teaching which would keep the students disciplined (at the same time Roubaud also suggested a system of stipends) and access to competition for the rank of artist for young people not studying in the Academy of Fine Arts.
Roubaud’s art is an organic part of orientalist and battle painting of the late 19th century and early 20th century. However, after the artist found his individual manner and after traditional scumbling was replaced by free brushstrokes and harmonious coloration took the place of variegated colour, his work began to stand out against this general background for its immediacy and the absence of a certain ‘bewildered’ quality, which is now a slight hindrance to the reception of works in this genre. But it is not only the large compositions which speak of Roubaud’s genuine possibilities of, but also his smaller works, studies and sketches, in which the reveals his ability to work with different techniques. Roubaud painted with oil on canvas, wood and board, and worked in tempera and pastel. His willingness to work in different manners perfectly suited panoramas where the juxtapositions of objects demanded illusion painting, whereas the ability to communicate a general sense of distance was needed to create the effect of enormous space.
It is Roubaud’s sense of space which to a large extent makes his officially commissioned paintings so attractive: we see the same endless sky above the historic events in the large composition Peter I. entering Tarki as we do above the everyday life captured in his small painting TheMole in Yalta. And the mountain studies that came into being as auxiliary material share the same painterly quality, a fact which demands that they be guaranteed a place in Roubaud’s legacy which the artist himself would never have attributed to them.
At the turn of the 20th century Roubaud was a highly esteemed painter both in Petersburg and in Munich. The Munich press considered it important to inform their readers about the acquisition of new works by Roubaud by rich clients, about his work on The Storming on June 6, 1855 and about his planned move to Petersburg in connection with the beginning of his teaching career. In 1915 Roubaud was seen as a painter whose work would be given a special place in history: Roubaud is an important manifestation of the transitional stage between the old painting and the painting of impressions.17 However, as early as 1916 Roubaud’s large composition After the Battle, shown at the exhibition in Glass Palace, was seen by critics as being too realistic and illustrative,18 and by the 1920s his painting was seen as firmly belonging to the past. Roubaud’s time came again at the end of the 1970s when the catalogue for the Munich School exhibition in Munich noted the artist’s vivid and bold paintings, which are remarkable in their intense painterly expressiveness.19
1 O. Fedorova has examined the link between Roubaud’s early painting style and provincial, southern Russian painting. (Федорова О. Франц Рубо. М., 1982, p. 9.) It is seems more likely, however, that the scrupulousness of the young Roubaud’s brushstrokes is more likely to be linked to his desire to imitate the exact and objective painting of Horschelt.
2 In Munich Roubaud’s talent was noticed immediately: Piloty gave him an excellent report after his first year’s study. However, Roubaud’s material position was so impoverished, that, despite free tuition at the Bavarian Academy of Fine Arts, he had to abandon his studies. The artist would return to the Bavarian Academy of Fine Arts in 1891, but by that time he was already a professor.
3 The following paintings, kept at the ‘Temple of Glory’, belong to the 1886 commission (the names are given according to: Краткий путеводитель по Кавказскому Военно-историческому музею (=A Brief Guide to the Caucasian Military History Museum), Тифлис, 1911, p. 2-88.
The Entry of Peter the Great into Tarki, 13. June 1722
The Entry of Russian Troops in Tiflis (26. November 1799)
The Storm of Lekoran by General Kotlyarevsky (1. March 1813)
The Surrender of the Yerevan Fortress, 1. October 1827
The Battle at Elizavetpol, 13. September 1826
The Taking of Achulgo, 22. August 1839
The Storm of the Aul of Gimry (17. October 1832)
The Storm of the Fortress of Salty (14. October 1832)
The Death of General Sleptsov, 10. December 1851
The Taking of the Aul of Dargo (6. June 1845)
The Battle at Kuryuk-dara (24. July 1854)
Prince Argutinsky’s Crossing of the Snowy Mountains of the Caucasus (1853)
The Taking of Gunib and the capture of Chamil (25. August 1859)
The Storming of the Mikhailovsky Stronghold by the Circassians (22. March 1840)
The Storm of Kars on the night of 6. November 1877
The Taking of the Geok-Tepe Fortress (12. January 1881)
The Battle at the River Kushka (18. March 1885)
On this, cf. the publication in the third edition of Вестник Музея-панорамы «Бородинская битва» (=Gazette of the Museum-panorama “The Borodino Battle”), Moscow, 2006: «…Печальное состояние Кавказского Военно-исторического музея»: Воробьев Т.И. Гибель «Храма славы» (=The sorry state of the Caucasian Military History Museum: T. I. Vorobyov, The Death of the ‘Temple of Glory’), published by G. I. Gerasimova (p. 136, 141).
4 See: Русская дореволюционная и советская живопись. В собрании Национального художественного музея Республики Беларусь. Catalogue in two volumes. Minsk. 1997. Cat. 1357.
5 Pecht, F. Die erste Münchner Jahres-Ausstellung 1889 in: Die Kunst für Alle, 1889, S. 20; Pecht, F. Die Jahres- Ausstellung 1894 der Künstlergenossenschaft zu München in: Die Kunst für Alle, 1894, S. 325
6 We can see the extent to which Roubaud valued his reputation as uninterested in money from the following fact: when he found out in 1912 that the sculptor Léopold Bernstamm had been appointed as the commissar of the Russian section, he asked the Imperial Academy of Arts to give him a letter for Munich testifying that this decision had not been motivated by any infringements or lack of good conscience on his part.
7 Dem jungen Roubaud wurde es vorgeworfen, dass er allzu oft zum backstein-braunem Farbton greift.
8 For all Roubaud’s deeply emotional attitude to the Russian throne (until the end of his life he cherished a glove from a hand which had once been shaken by the tsar) and his talent for winning sympathy at the highest level (we should in the first place recall his close relationship with Prince Regent Luitpold), Roubaud was a man of independent democratic views, without any national prejudices.
9 In this period the career of a panoramist was heavily dependent on their familiarity with French experience and success in this field was associated with recognition in France. Thus, Louis Braun who completed The Battle at Sedan, one of the most celebrated panoramas of the late 19th century, between 1878 and 1880, worked in the studio of Horace Vernet. For Roubaud too, the success of Achulgo in Paris in 1891 was important. Later Roubaud travelled to Paris while collecting materials for The Battle of Borodino. A whole number of facts speak in favour of Roubaud and Braun being acquainted: both artists were members of a circle of painters close to Prince Regent Luitpold, both lived in Munich on Schwanthaler Strasse, and the same artists that had worked on Braun’s The Battle at Sedan and The Battle of Weissenburg were members of Roubaud’s panorama team. All three of Roubaud’s panoramas were painted in Munich, and at the very least one of them was painted in a panorama pavilion that belonged to Braun.
10 Cf. Stephan Oettermann, Das Panorama. Die Geschichte eines Massenmediums, Frankfurt an der Main, 1980, pp. 128ff.
11 The reason for the financial failure of the showing of Achulgo in Paris was, evidently, the negligence of those responsible for exhibiting the panorama. Work on The Storming on 6. June 1855, and to a certain extent The Battle of Borodino also, was accompanied by chronic money problems. It is telling that after the opening of Borodino Roubaud, taking advantage of the new (1911) copyright law, tried to rescue the situation by publishing photographs of his creation. None of this means, however, that Roubaud was not a well-paid artist. His easel works were popular with buyers and well remunerated. In Munich, no later than 1885, Roubaud became an exhibitor at the permanent exhibition-sale Kunsthandlung Wimmer. A good example of the purchase of a Roubaud painting in Russia is the occasion when the Academy of Fine arts acquired The Taking of Geok-Tepe on the advice of Ilya Repin and Pavel Kovalevsky. The Academy of Fine Arts, departing from its policy of only acquiring works by Russian subjects, paid 2600 rubles for the painting. To profits from sales in Germany and Russia we can also add his monthly fee of 200 rubles (430 marks) which were transferred to Roubaud in Munich every month as a professor of the Imperial Academy of Arts.
12 He would consult with specialists on questions of historical accuracy. While creating the panorama The Storming of Achulgo he took advice from the military historian Vasily Potto, whom he had gone to visit in the Caucasus