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Uncovering Scandinavian Romanticism Maddie Crawford In any given art history book the section on Scandinavian art will

be quite brief, if included at all. However, Scandinavia is a place ripe with artists. Art was created during all of the major time periods in Scandinavia. One such movement, known as the Romantic period launched landscape artists such as Hans Gude, Lars Hetervig, Johan Thomas Lundbye, Peter Skovgaard, Vilhelm Kyhn, and Johan Christan Dahl. Scandinavian Landscape painters of the1800’s represented the typical Romantic characteristics common of the era in Europe. At the end of the eighteenth century, a new movement called Romanticism was sweeping across Europe. Romanticism was not only an artistic movement but also an intellectual movement. The Romantic era was a revolt against the orderly and simplistic style of previous Neo-Classicism. All Romanticts were huge lovers of nature. Supporters of the Romantic movement were strongly against the Neo-Classicism belief of rationalizing nature through science. The value of untamed nature was highly appreciated by the artists of the Romantic era. Romantic art placed a new importance on emotions such as horror and amazement. Spontaneity and the supernatural were also aroused during the era. Hans Frederick Gude is considered one of Norway’s foremost landscape painters. Gude was born in Christiania in 1825 and at only eight years old began attending evening art classes at the Royal School of Drawing. Gude entered the art scene at only nineteen years old with his first painting titled Mountain Heights1. The painting is styled in a mono1

See appendix A

Although Hetervig’s works contain depressing tones and darkness. In his later years. Everything from the waves to the water dripping off of the paddle of the boat reveals a strong love for the ocean. The Bridal Procession is now privately owned in Oslo. painted in 1848. how the light reflected on the water. a strong love of nature is also present. and how quickly the mood of the sea could change. broken down forest under an immense 2 3 See appendix B A mental condition marked by persistent depression and ill-founded fears. 4 See appendix C . Gude became obsessed with the ocean. Despite his humble beginnings. The painting “Ancient Pine Forest4” is one of Hetervig’s best pieces. The painting however now resides in the National Gallery of Norway and is considered to be Gude’s best work. is considered to be the seminal of Norwegian Romanticism. yet appears upbeat. He was fascinated by the emotions of the tides. The Bridal procession in Hardanger2. The minimalistic styling of the cabins in the lower corner portray the vastness of nature. The painting created great positive response for Gude and was later purchased by Kunstforeningen in Christiania. another notable Norwegian landscape painter was born in 1820. The dark life Hetervig faced is reflected in his artwork and distinguishes him from other artists. Gude paid close attention to detail in the waves of the sea and created a beautiful representation of the water. His painting. Hetervig was forced to leave the academy after completing only two years of education due to a mental breakdown. Hetervig portrayed a somber. into a poor Quaker family in Tysvaer. However. When Hetervig returned home he was diagnosed with melancholia3. Gude created the piece after an emotional evening at the theatre. Lars Hetervig. at age twenty-two Hetervig went on to study art privately under Gude at the Arts Academy of Dusseldorf. Mountain Heights portrays a cold evening in autumn with a low valley with a large lake as the focal point of the piece.chromatic grey.

Although Dahl was Norwegian he spent his time equally between Denmark and Norway. Dahl’s talent earned him the title of father of Norwegian landscape painting. Lundbye was extremely kind-hearted and was known not only for his landscape paintings. Lundbye began studying at the Royal Danish Academy of Art at the young age of fourteen. Dahl’s love of nature is evident throughout his works. and Kyhn. Lars Hetervig was largely unknown during his lifetime and died in the poorhouse in 1902. emphasizing Lundbye’s characteristic love of animals. As a child he wrote in depth of his love of Danish landscape. Lundbye. It wasn’t until 1914. Herds of animals graze in the foreground along with a collection of cabins. Lundbye’s technique of painting is rhythmical and poetic. but also for his strong patriotism and love of children and animals. Like Skovgaard. The painting displays two cows prominent in the foreground. Hetervig struggled financially during his lifetime and often painted on paper that was not sufficient. Dahl portrayed his love of nature in his painting “Stalheim”5 Dahl’s painting consists of dramatically composed mountains under a rainbow. Hetervig was known to patch pieces of paper together with homemade glue.blue sky. Johan Christian Clausson Dahl was born February 24. Dahl loved the beautiful nature of Norway. The landscape in the background 5 6 See appendix D See appendix E . Hetervig successfully expressed the sadness he was experiencing due to his illness while paying tribute to nature. 1788 in Norway. Dahl also studied at the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts. Johan Thomas Lundbye was born in September 1818 in Denmark. when his work was shown at the Jubilee exposition in Christiania that Hetervig was truly recognized. Lundbye painted one of his best known works “Two Cows in an Open Field6” in 1845.

He began painting idealized nature. the large forest overshadows them and is the focal point of the artwork. His painting. was sent to study at the Royal Danish Academy of Art at the age of fourteen7. “Beach Forest in May”9 represents his later style. Lundbye’s appreciation of the untamed is shown in the fact that the two cows relax freely outside of barriers. Peter Christian Thamsen Skovgaard born April 4. His painting “View to Frederiksværk from Tisvilde Forest”8 portrays a prominent forest with a large lake in the background. In later years Skovgaard would move onto much more peaceful paintings. Skovgaard added tiny details to contribute to the mood of the scene such as a group of children and also a dog. Skovgaard preferred to portray the wild untamed side of nature over placid scenes. or when trees were fully grown and beautiful. 1817 is considered the most influential Danish Romantic-era landscape painter. Early on Skovgaard painted portraits and interiors but soon allowed his strong love of nature to become the central focus of his career. when the sap was rising highest. Skovgaard was also more educated in botany than any other Scandinavian artist of the time. Skovgaard showed early promise artistically and like Lundbye. The wildness of the scene was common to Skovgaard as well as the dark mood of the subject. Skovgaard searched deep into nature in order to give a unique perspective of Danish landscapes. The painting has a young couple standing together on a path surrounded by a vast forest. Although the young couple is where the eye is led immediately. The trees within the forest appear to be ripe with life under a beautiful blue sky.shows an immense field and high mountains. In the spring of 1848 at thirty years old. Lundbye enlisted in the army but died only eight days into his term of service. 7 8 Skovgaard and Lundbye developed a close friendship at the academy See appendix F 9 See appendix G . Lundbye’s artistic career ended when the First War of Schleswig broke out.

Hans Gude was best known for his depictions of the coast in Norway. The artwork was later purchased by the Danish Royal Painting Collection. 10 See appendix H . Kyhn is not well-known in the art world because his talent was restricted. he went on to study at The Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in 1836 at the age of seventeen. The only reason Kyhn is recognized is because he presented a fresh and original feeling for nature within his works. he was not allowed to study art as a young teenager because his father was against his dreams of becoming an artist. Kyhn released his first landscape painting “A View of the Beach on Bornholm”10 in 1845. However. This first piece was close to Kyhn’s heart because it was one of his favorite places he often visited. A winding path towards the beach is the focal point of the piece and the water is present on the left and right sides of the artwork. He lacked Lundbye’s poetic style and Skovgaard’s strong sense of form. During the Romantic era many artists arose to great prominence in Scandinavia. However unlike Skovgaard and Lundbye. Scandinavia has produced great art throughout history. another notable Danish landscape painter was born March 30. Contrary to popular belief. A depiction of rolling hills covered with varying foliage is present within the scene.Vilhelm Kyhn. Peter Skovgaard searched deep into nature to give his very own unique view of Danish landscapes. Norwegian painter Johan Thomas Lundbye is famous for incorporating children and animals into his pieces. Danish man Vilhelm Kyhn presented deep feeling for nature within his works. Johan Dahl rose to fame as the father of modern Norwegian landscape painting. 1819. Lars Hetervig is distinguished by his somber yet upbeat illustrations of Norwegian landscapes. Landscape painters of the 1800’s in Scandinavia represented the typical romantic characteristics in Europe.

Appendix A .

Hans Gude “Mountain Heights” Appendix B .

Hans Gude “Bridal Procession in Hardanger” .

Appendix C Lars Hetervig “Ancient Pine Forest” Appendix D .

Johan Dahl “Stalheim” Appendix E .

Johan Thomas Lundbye “Two Cows in an Open Field” Appendix F .

Peter Christian Thamsen Skovgaard “View to Frederiksværk from Tisvilde Forest” Appendix G .

Peter Skovgaard “Beach Forest in May” Appendix H .

Vilhelm Kyhn “A View of the Beach on Bornholm” Bibliography .

C. n. Stephen. Laurin. the free encyclopedia."Hans Gude . n. Little. the free encyclopedia.. Print. .d. New York: Universe. New York: B.gonorway. 2011. Print.N..net. Web. N. Skovgaard . 1 Nov. the free encyclopedia. Blom. and Jens Thiis. 3 Nov._Skovgaard>. -isms: understanding art.wikipedia. New York: H. 2011. Web.p." Wikipedia. < http://en. n.." Wikipedia.org/wiki/P. 1968. Art history. "P.no/norway/article/2775>. Abrams.org/wiki/Johan_Lundbye>. <www. "Johan Lundbye .wikipedia. 2004. 16 Nov.p. and Stephen Addiss.d." gonorway. Marion Spears Grayson.d.Wikipedia. Emil Hannover. Carl G. Stokstad. 2011.p. Marilyn. Scandinavian art. 1995.. N. N. Web._C. Print. <http://en.

Uncovering Scandinavian Romanticism Madison Crawford November 2011 .