Dusk, The End of a Days Work (1889)

Aagaard, Carl Frederick (1833 - 1895)

Dusk, The End of a Days Work

Oil on Canvas: 24" x 42"
Catalog# AAGC-002

The evening sky is filled with the colors of dusk as the sun sets on another day of work. Puddles left by the rain reflect the gray skies and golden sun. Two cows stand in the center of the road waiting for their owner to finish his visit with a street mender who has constructed a make-shift shelter of wood and thatching from the storm. The work of the street mender is one of humility and civil service. His materials of rocks and earth are seen by his side as he waits for his tips for servicing the rough roads. As a storm has passed through, his livelihood for the next few days is inevitable as there are surely more patches to make in the road.

Fall is evident by the migrating birds in the upper left of the composition and the barren tree in the fore-right. The landscape demands the viewers focus as its saturation of the rain has enhanced and deepened its colors. The winding dirt road and grass contrasts nicely with the opposite curvature of the clouds. Both carry the eye to the focal point of the piece – the last of the visible sun in its most brilliant phase.

The artist has taken a simple scene of everyday life and composed and executed it in such a way that he has created a scene of extraordinary beauty. His abilities as an artist are evident in the execution of nature, livestock, and figures.

Artist: Carl Frederik Aagaard (1833-1895)

  • Born January 31st 1833 in Odense, DK.
  • Son of Ole Aagaard & Ane Ursula Thrane.
  • Married Anna Emilie Pio July 1st 1858.
  • Died November 11th 1895 in Copenhagen.


  • 1847-52 - Attended The Odense Art School under Prange.
  • 1852 - Attended The Odense Technical Art School, then The Royal Art Academy.


  • 1852 - Student of G.C. Hilker, F. Kittendorff, and P.C. Skovgaard


  • 1870-71, 75-76 - Paris and Italy
  • 1876 - Norway


  • 1857-96 - Charlottenborg Palace Spring Exhibitions
  • 1866 - Royal Art Academy Exhibit
  • 1872, 88 - Nordic Exhibition in Copenhagen
  • 1878 - Paris Exhibition
  • 1882, 1942 - National Artist Exhibition
  • 1896 - Nordic Art Exhibit in Lubeck
  • 1901 - Town Hall Exhibit in Copenhagen
  • 1985 - Hundested Town Hall Exhibit
  • 1986 - Vejle National Art Museum
  • 1987 - Krapperup Museum and Town Hall

Positions & Appointments:

  • 1873-79 - Member of Charlottenborg Palace Exhibition Committee
  • 1874-83 - Member of The Royal Art Academy Council
  • 1887 - Member of the General Assembly Committee
  • 1887-95 - Honorary Head of the National Art Association

Awards & Acknowledgements:

  • 1857 - Neuhausen’s Prize
  • 1860, 69, 70 - Royal Academy Medals
  • 1865 - Sodrings Prize
  • 1875 - Michael Ancher Medal
  • 1892 - Titular Professor at The Royal Art Academy

Educated at the Royal Academy of Fine Arts in 1852. Pupil of G.C Hilkier, Johan Peter Aagaard and P.C Skovgaard. Aagaard was highly influenced by his teacher P.C Skovgaard working with romantic landscapes of extraordinary details and lights. In Aagaard's early days he collaborated with artist Henrich Hansen. working on the interior decors at the Royal Oprah and Theater House in Copenhagen and for the cathedral in Roskilde. Aagaard's décor is still visible to this day where he did a large landscape from the ceiling to the wall at the private chambers of the royal family. Aagaard traveled to Paris and Italy where he worked from 1870-1876. The numerous sketches from his travels were later finished in Denmark and Aagaard's famous work “The amphitheater in Sicily” was exhibited at the Copenhagen Museum in 1895. Other famous works include "At the Forest" exhibited at Reykjavik, Iceland 1880 and "Sunset at Saltholm" exhibited at Aarhus Museum in 1889. The works of Aagaard have frequently been exhibited all over Europe and many of his works are kept in national galleries worldwide.