Genre & Material
Where can I find this in Berlin?
Adolph Menzel grants us a detailed insight of a cultural evening at the court of Friedrich the Great in the palace Sanssouci. Music is being played. The king himself is playing the flute. He is standing in the centre of the picture. To the right his chamber ensemble and to the left an audience of dignitaries and noble ladies. The focus of the painting is not on the instruments but rather the atmosphere of the musicians and the listening ones. The precious dresses and furniture, the interior design, the chandelier and the candle light is what Menzel wants to show us. The king is optically separated from the other musicians therefore he is positioned uniquely. The music stand is so high, that eye contact with the other musicians is practically impossible.
Centre: Friedrich the Great; rightmost: Johann Joachim Quantz, the king’s flute teacher; left of him with a violin and a dark skirt: Franz Benda; In the foreground at the very left: Gustav Adolf von Gotter; Behind him: Jakob Friedrich Freiherr von Bielfeld; Behind him, looking towards the ceiling: Pierre-Louis Moreau de Maupertuis; In the background, sitiing on the pink couch: Wilhelmine von Bayreuth; On her right: Amalie von Preußen with a court lady; Behind them: Carl Heinrich Graun; Old lady behind the music stand: Countess Camas; Behind her: Egmont von Chasot; Cembalo player: Carl Phillip Emanuel Bach.
ART@Berlin: Adolph Menzel – Flute concert in Sanssouci