Studio Treasure - Arts at Home - everything about Home, Interior Decorating, Artists, and Art - helpful hints & recommendations. Studio Treasure Art Guide


Oak Tree in the Snow
The Oak Tree in the Snow
1829, 71x48 cm
Alte Nationalgalerie, Berlin.
Friedrich was one of the first artists to portray winter landscapes as stark and dead. His winter scenes are solemn and still — according to the art historian Hermann Beenken, Friedrich painted winter scenes in which "no man has yet set his foot".


Seashore by Moonlight
Seashore by Moonlight
1835–36, 134x169 cm
Kunsthalle, Hamburg.
His final "black painting", Seashore by Moonlight, is described by William Vaughan as the "darkest of all his shorelines."

  Caspar David Friedrich  

"I am not so weak as to submit to the demands of the age when they go against my convictions. I spin a cocoon around myself; let others do the same. I shall leave it to time to show what will come of it: a brilliant butterfly or maggot."

Caspar David Friedrich

The painter should paint not only what he has in front of him, but also what he sees inside himself.

Caspar David

  home home
books our books
artists A-Z artists A-Z
art magazines art magazines
art museums art museums
styles styles
lessons lessons
articles articles
 featured artists
news for artists news for artists
links links
contact blog
contact contact
Bookmark and Share English Site Translator
Caspar David Friedrich by Gerhard von Kugelgen
Gerhard von Kugelgen, Portrait of Caspar David Friedrich (c. 1810–20)

"What the newer landscape artists see in a circle of a hundred degrees in Nature they press together unmercifully into an angle of vision of only forty-five degrees. And furthermore, what is in Nature separated by large spaces, is compressed into a cramped space and overfills and oversatiates the eye, creating an unfavorable and disquieting effect on the viewer."

Caspar David Friedrich

artists:   A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z  



The German Romantic Landscape Painter - Caspar David Friedrich
By Annette Labedzki

Nineteenth century, German 'Romantic' landscape painter, Caspar David Friedrich was born on September 5, 1774, in Greifswald, to candle-maker, Adolf Gottlieb Friedrich and Sophie Dorothea Bechly. By the age of thirteen, Caspar had lost his mother, sister, and brother.

His artistic career began with his coaching under Johann Gottfried Quistrop, a friend of the 'Romantic' poet, Ludwig Theobul Kosegarten. Ludwig introduced Friedrich to 'Romanticism' and willed him to develop his own faculty of analyzing picturesque landscapes. Ludwig, himself fascinated by 'Megaliths' in architecture, encouraged Friedrich to give place to local 'Megaliths' as his artistic themes. From 1794 to 1798, the painter studied at the Academy of Copenhagan, concentrating solely on understanding the intricacies of 'landscape painting.'

In 1798, Friedrich migrated to the German center of the 'Romantic Movement' in Dresden. Here he met painter Philipp Otto Runge and poets, Novalis & Ludwig Tieck. In addition, here, Friedrich forayed into printmaking with etchings and woodcuts, which were exclusively designed for some very close friends of his. In 1805, the artist won a prize for two of his 'Sepia' drawings, "Procession at Dawn" and "Fisher-Folk by the Sea," at a Weimar Competition.

Friedrich's first major painting, "The Cross in the Mountains (1807)," an altarpiece panel, depicted a crucified Christ in the midst of natural surroundings. This painting became trendsetter, as for the first time an altarpiece carried landscapes. Another work of his, "Abbey under Oak Trees (1809-10)," centered on a death scene, was donated to the Berlin Academy in 1810. During this period, 'Mysticism' encircled Caspar David's style of painting, with a smooth blending of 'Realism' and 'Romanticism'. In his 'allegorical' landscape paintings, inconsequential figures seem contemplative, enamored by the vastness of nature, and transfixed in its enigma. In his dramatic painting, "Monk by the Sea (1809)," a lonely figure is portrayed, exposed to the echoing sounds of the vast sea.

In 1816, Friedrich entered the Dresden Academy, and held the post of an Assistant Professor in 1824. On January 21, 1818, he married Caroline Bommer, after which his paintings began exhibiting a transition towards a more 'figurative' style. This change was a direct result of the change in Caspar's personal circumstances, where he started attaching greater importance to human life and relationships.

Friedrich's career as a painter flourished under the patronage of Grand Duke Nikolai Pavlovich and poet Vasily Zhukovsky. During his later years, his paintings came under criticism for being too bleak and devoid of emotions. Due to this, his popularity took a beating. His works during this period were representative of mainly, ship and harbor scenes, while some of them dealt with the human lifecycle. His melancholy mood, prevalent around this time, was symbolized in his paintings, where he often delved in the themes of the threshold between life and death.

In 1835, Caspar David suffered a stroke, which left him incapacitated to paint further. He died five years later on May 7, 1840. He was an exception of his times, his works touching the innate romantic strings in the heart of the onlooker. Throughout, he considered himself an interpreter of the nature's glory. Caspar David Friedrich's most magnificent works include "Old Heroes' Graves (1812)," "The Cross Beside The Baltic (1815)," "Moonrise Over The Sea (1822)," "Graveyard Under Snow (1826)," "The Oak Tree in the Snow (1829)," and "Seashore by Moonlight (1835-36)."


Annette Labedzki received her BFA at the Emily Carr College of Art and Design in Vancouver, B.C. Canada. She has more than 25 years experience. She is the founder and developer of an online art gallery featuring original art from all over the world. It is a great site for art collectors to buy original art. Is is also a venue for artists to display and sell their art . Artists can join for free and their image upload is unlimited. Please visit the website at

Article Source:




Caspar David Friedrich Foundation

Hermitage Museum Archive - 89 paintings by Caspar David Friedrich

Web Gallery of Art - comprehensive collection of Friedrich's works

Artcyclopedia - links to Friedrich's pictures from Image Archives, articles etc

Biographical timeline, Hamburg Kunsthalle



Landscape and the sublime

The visualisation and portrayal of landscape in an entirely new manner was Friedrich's key innovation. He sought not just to explore the blissful enjoyment of a beautiful view, as in the classic conception, but rather to examine an instant of sublimity , a reunion with the spiritual self through the contemplation of nature. He created the notion of a landscape full of romantic feeling— die romantische Stimmungslandschaft. His art details a wide range of geographical features, such as rock coasts, forests, and mountain scenes. Friedrich was instrumental in transforming landscape in art from a backdrop subordinated to human drama to a self-contained emotive subject. He often used the landscape to express religious themes. During his time, most of the best-known paintings were viewed as expressions of a religious mysticism.

from Wikipedia

Copyright StudioTreasure© 1999-2009. All rights reserved. StudioTreasure.