Abbey in the Oakwood by Caspar David Friedrich

Abbey in the Oakwood

(Abtei im Eichenwald)

Caspar David Friedrich

Romantic  ·  Our favourites
landscape · gothic ruin · evening · graveyard · spooky · abandoned · romantic · religious implication · romanticist · tomb
Abbey in the Oakwood by Caspar David Friedrich
1810   ·  Öl auf Leinwand  ·  52.28 Megapixel  ·  Picture ID: 104116   ·  Schloss Charlottenburg, Berlin, Germany /
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The picture is a bit dark, but still fascinating. How did the painter manage to create this incredible lighting mood? The "Abbey in the Oak Forest" by Caspar David Friedrich is a painting that immediately captivates the beholder. It's hard to say what's eye-catching first. Is it the fragment of the wall of the convent ruin, whose gothic window adorns the middle of the picture? Or is it rather the foggy blurred background, which has its brightest area in the middle of the picture and inevitably draws the gaze into itself? At least you will first notice these two elements. Then the gnarled oak trees rising next to the ruins become visible. Only late does the view wander into the dark lower part. Crosses and gravestones are scattered around the ruins on the snow-covered earth, like strange figures. But as you can see on closer inspection, some of these characters are actually people, monks, who carry a casket to the portal of the ruin.

The picture has already given many people puzzles. Because the composition is clear: several verticals (the trees and the monastery ruins themselves) are crossed by a huge horizontal (the strip of light in the sky). But what about the content? One could say that the picture is an allegory of death and eternal life. The bare trees, the dilapidated monastery, and not least the crosses, indicate an open grave and the coffin. The light, on the other hand, in the background, on the heights, wants to show the soul the way to eternity.

The "Abbey in the Oak Forest" is a good example of the topics that kept Friedrich busy again and again. Because it is not the only painting that deals with the death or the lostness of man in the face of a dramatic nature. © Meisterdrucke
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Abtei im Eichenwald (AT) Abtei im Eichenwald (DE) Abtei im Eichenwald (CH) Abbey in the Oakwood (US)
Abbazia di Oakwood (IT) Abbaye dans le Oakwood (FR) Abdij in Oakwood (NL) Abadía en el roble (ES) Аббатство в Оквуде (RU)
अभय ओकवुड में (HI) 奥克伍德修道院 (ZH) Abadia em Oakwood (PT)

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Hausergasse 21 · 9500 Villach, Austria
+43 4242 25574 ·
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Abtei im Eichenwald (AT) Abtei im Eichenwald (DE) Abtei im Eichenwald (CH) Abbey in the Oakwood (US) Abbazia di Oakwood (IT) Abbaye dans le Oakwood (FR) Abdij in Oakwood (NL) Abadía en el roble (ES) Аббатство в Оквуде (RU) अभय ओकवुड में (HI) 奥克伍德修道院 (ZH) Abadia em Oakwood (PT)

(c) 2019