Trees and churches...they used to coexist!
May 8, 2010 2:37 AM   Subscribe

Romantic-era-art-filter: help me find the most beautiful painting that I've only seen once?

So picture your typical, blase undergrad, about 12-13 years ago, taking History of Western Art. Suddenly, this class-blowing-off, "why-do-I have-to-take-this" girl discovers the Romantics via H. of W.A. slideshow, and starts coming to class way more regularly. Unfortunately, this previously uncaring student was so enthralled by the insane brilliance displayed that she certainly didn't bother with such worldly activities as taking notes. She therefore needs her fellow MeFites to identify the following painting for her:

Romantic era(ish). Basically it was a cathedral with the two outlying spires consisting of evergreens. Full-front view. I've never succeeded in finding it again, due to not knowing the artist, title, or country of origin. Please tell me what it is!

Bonus points for recommending other Romantic paintings that have rocked your world, for whatever reason...preferably ones that are nature-oriented.
posted by deep thought sunstar to Media & Arts (10 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Caspar David Friedrich's Das Kreuz im Gebirge? That's an awful picture of it, but it sounds like what you're talking about--and Friedrich is the master of totally rocking your socks off with nature.
posted by besonders at 2:47 AM on May 8, 2010 [3 favorites]

Rocks my world.
posted by infini at 3:14 AM on May 8, 2010

Arnold Böcklin's "The Isle of the Dead" (Die Toteninsel), one of the most popular paintings at the turn of the XX century.
Inane piece of trivia: it was inspired by the English Cemetery in Florence.
posted by _dario at 4:48 AM on May 8, 2010 [1 favorite]

Here's the painting (a few versions exist). I'm a dummkopf.
posted by _dario at 4:51 AM on May 8, 2010 [1 favorite]

This Turner rocked my socks off the first time I saw it.
posted by sundri at 5:09 AM on May 8, 2010

Jacob van Ruisdael influenced the Romantics, so you might like his work (and you might find the painting you're looking for). This painting by Friedrich blew me away when I first saw it in my Intro to Art History class nearly a decade ago: Monk by the Sea.
posted by katie at 9:04 AM on May 8, 2010

Response by poster: thanks, everyone! Besonders, that's it!! And _dario, that is AMAZING!
posted by deep thought sunstar at 9:35 AM on May 8, 2010

Yes, speaking of Caspar David Friedrich, his painting The Abbey in the Oakwood is reproduced on the cover of my Penguin paperback of Herman Hesse's Narcissus and Goldmund. Like any classic Penguin paperback, the image reflects the story really well.
posted by ovvl at 4:12 PM on May 8, 2010 [1 favorite]

And if you like 'Heroic Landscapes', then you'll like Albert Bierstadt and Frederic Edwin Church
posted by ovvl at 4:21 PM on May 8, 2010

and I have discovered a) how little I know about art but b) a whole new vista has opened up for me, thanks all
posted by infini at 4:21 PM on May 8, 2010

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