Rooms with a View: The Open Window in the 19th Century

April 5–July 4, 2011

Gallery Two: Artists' Studios

The Romantic painter Caspar David Friedrich needed the monkish austerity of his studio in Dresden, where he was portrayed by Georg Friedrich Kersting, his admiring younger colleague. Kersting also depicted the now-forgotten German painter Friedrich Matthäi amid his academic clutter. In France, unidentified female artists worked in elegant drawing rooms overlooking picturesque Parisian views. Their male colleagues could compete for the prestigious Prix de Rome, which allowed them to spend five years as pensionnaires at the Académie de France in the Villa Medici in Rome. It was during their residence at that distinguished place that the French painters Jean Alaux and Léon Cogniet commemorated their stay by painting vistas of the city's famous panorama or by capturing glimpses of the villa's sunlit garden.