Much more than a painter, Kobell was an important figure in the history of German engraving, and created over 300 etchings over the course of his career. While studying at the University of Heidelberg, Kobell was approached by the Elector of Bavaria, who admired one of his landscapes; with the elector's support, Kobell was able to paint full-time. After a subsequent period of study in Paris, he was appointed to the position of painter to the Cabinet, and later became a professor at the Academy. His sons Franz and Wilhelm von Kobell would go on to become painters themselves.
Landscape with Travelers Resting is an articulate sketch that plays upon a theme central to Kobell's body of work. Best known for his landscapes, Kobell often depicted travelers on horseback in the country. This drawing is similar in its compositional balance to Kobell's oil on canvas Landscape with Travelers (below; collection of the Harvard University Art Museums): both feature a prominent foreground consisting of a path through rolling hills, framed by rock formations and a large tree on the right hand side. Landscape with Travelers Resting additionally bears the watermark Churchill 322; this was the watermark of the Dutch papermaking family by the name of Honig, who owned mills in Zaandyk (Netherlands) beginning in the 17th century.
Holtkott Collection (ink stamp verso)
Swann Auction Galleries, New York, 29 January 2004, lot 306
The Greenwich Gallery of American Art, CT