Sunday, 1 January 2012

Bite 148: Caspar David Friedrich - Wanderer above the Sea of Fog, 1818

Wanderer above the Sea of Fog, 1818, Oil on canvas, 94.8 × 74.8 cm, Kunsthalle Hamburg
"The painter should paint not only what he has in front of him, but also what he sees inside himself. If he sees nothing within then he should stop painting what is in front of him."
                                                        - Caspar David Friedrich
A turbulent sea of fog: a reflection of inner emotion. Turned from the viewer, the subject is the artist himself, while, at the same time, us before the sublime power of nature.

One foot forward, toward the distant horizon, bold and apprehensive, the 'wanderer' gazes out at a mysterious landscape, wide and threatening. Like much of Friedrich's work this painting is mystical and melancholy, religious and quietly profound.