Seascapes: Caspar David Friedrich

Caspar David Friedrich's (German, 1774- 1840) paintings usually intimate a sense of the earth's vastness, and are essentially metaphors for our deep and complex spiritual path through life.

The public regard for Friedrich's style of romantic mysticism has risen and fallen a few times, both during his lifetime and after. In 1945 art historian Kenneth Clark found his style "frigid", and wondered if his intentions might be better expressed in poetry, but now his visionary work is held in the highest regard.

Sea of Ice oil on canvas 38"x 49.9" 1823-24

 Wanderer Above the Sea of Fog oil on canvas 37.3" × 29.4" 1818

Stages of Life oil on canvas 28.5" x 37" 1835

Northern Sea in the Moonlight oil on canvas 12.2"x8.7" 1823-24

Fog oil on canvas 1807
"The artist should not only paint what he sees before him, but also what he sees in himself."

"I must stay alone and know that I am alone to contemplate and feel nature in full; I have to surrender myself to what encircles me, I have to merge with my clouds and rocks in order to be what I am. Solitude is indispensible for my dialogue with nature."

"The divine is everywhere, even in a grain of sand."- Caspar David Friedrich


  1. Friedrich will always be one of my heroes. Years ago when I was in my MFA program in painting at Indiana University and was first getting involved with plain air painting, Friedrich stood out in my mind. He was an example of how landscape painting could be deeply emotional and in the end quite profound. All these years later I haven't changed my mind/

  2. Thanks for introducing me to this wonderful artist. The quotes you included touched my soul as I look at nature, fog, snow, from that which is within me. Fredrich's paintings touched me deeply especially "Fog".

  3. Gosh, one painting is more marvelous than the next. I couldn't begin to pick a favorite. Thank you for sharing!


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