post-title portfolio-title Carl Blechen – Waldweg bei Spandau no no

Carl Blechen – Waldweg bei Spandau

Artist

Carl Blechen, his full name Carl Eduard Ferdinand Heinrich Blechen, born on July 29, 1798, in Cottbus, died on July 23, 1840, in Berlin and buried in the cemetery of the Church of the Holy Trinity II in Berlin-Kreuzberg. Carl Blechen was appointed professor of landscape painting in 1831 – also on recommendation of Karl Friedrich Schinkel – at the Berlin Academy of Arts. As one of the first major outdoor and landscape painters, Blechen became one of the main representatives of this genre in Romanticism. Blechen is considered one of the pioneers of Realism and Impressionism, as some of Blechen’s works are more closely aligned to the idea of Realism than the idea of Classical Romanticism. From the mid-30s, Blechen suffered from recurring depressive episodes, which affected him more and more strongly, so that he was given leave of absence in 1836. Two stays in a nervous clinic in 1837 and 1839 did not improve his condition. In 1840, Blechen died shortly before his 42nd birthday.

Artwork

„Waldweg bei Spandau“ („Forest Path near Spandau“) was created in 1835 – the same year in which Carl Blechen’s depression made itself known. In this final creative period of his life, Blechen created several pictures that take up the subject of mystic, dark, almost fantastical forests and landscapes. "Waldweg bei Spandau" measures 101.5 x 73 cm (width x height).

Brief description

A dark, cathedral-like forest of beeches and pines curves above a small footbridge, on which a young woman stands. She is dressed in white, in the style of Romanticism, with an aproned skirt, white stockings and a headscarf. She has placed a bundle of hay on the handrail of the bridge. She is looking towards the viewer. Blechen has created three lighting accents in the largely dark green to black shades of the painting. The middle one is the strongest emphasis – here, the forest opens up at the place where a lane, covered in puddles and morass and leading across the footbridge, leaves the forest and at the same time provides a view of Spandau. A cathedral can be seen in the background, which thrones over a wide river on a citadel. Blechen has also created lighting accents on the left and right of the picture; these are, however, milder than that in the centre. The threefold division of the picture in composition with the mystic sublimity of the forest as a space, which radiates protectiveness despite the darkness, evokes the interior of a church, whose intellectual counterpart can be found in the man-made church structure, which is small in the background, yet still perceivable in the centre of the picture. In this work, Blechen impressively showcases the large, mystic, wild nature in contrast to man and his constructed world of the “city”.

Genre & material

Painting of Romantisicm, painted in oil on canvas

Where can I find this painting?

In the Alten Nationalgalerie on the Museuminsel, Bodestraße 1-3, 10178 Berlin-Mitte. To find out how to get there, please click the link below the description.

A dark, cathedral-like forest of beeches and pines curves above a small footbridge, on which a young woman stands. She is dressed in white, in the style of Romanticism, with an aproned skirt, white stockings and a headscarf. She has placed a bundle of hay on the handrail of the bridge. She is looking towards the viewer. Blechen has created three lighting accents in the largely dark green to black shades of the painting. The middle one is the strongest emphasis – here, the forest opens up at the place where a lane, covered in puddles and morass and leading across the footbridge, leaves the forest and at the same time provides a view of Spandau. A cathedral can be seen in the background, which thrones over a wide river on a citadel. Blechen has also created lighting accents on the left and right of the picture; these are, however, milder than that in the centre. The threefold division of the picture in composition with the mystic sublimity of the forest as a space, which radiates protectiveness despite the darkness, evokes the interior of a church, whose intellectual counterpart can be found in the man-made church structure, which is small in the background, yet still perceivable in the centre of the picture.  In this work, Blechen impressively showcases the large, mystic, wild nature in contrast to man and his constructed world of the “city”.

Hier geht es zu dem Museum in Berlin, in dem Sie dieses Meisterwerk finden

ART@Berlin: Carl Blechen – Waldweg bei Spandau

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