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

April 5–July 4, 2011

Gallery Three: Drawings

Caspar David Friedrich's two sepia drawings of the river Elbe of 1805–6 (View from the Artist's Studio, Window on the Right and View from the Artist's Studio, Window on the Left) inaugurated the Romantic motif of the open window. Unlike the stark balance between the darkened interior and the pale landscape rendered in these views, the artists who followed Friedrich created gentler versions of the motif. Their windows open onto flat plains in Sweden, parks in German spas, or rooftops in Copenhagen. Artists' studios overlook houses in Dresden or Turin, bucolic Vienna suburbs, or Roman cityscapes saturated with light. In several sitting rooms offering urban views of Berlin, the interiors evoke stage sets to satisfy the artist's delightful mania with perspective and reflections.