City and landscape: although this might initially seem a contradiction in terms, painters have frequently brought the two together. Landscape painting underwent a boom around 1800 and included urban space as a motif. Italy was the destination of numerous art tours, and Rome with its ancient ruins and Mediterranean light offered inspiration for city views that combined long and short perspective in a topographically exact manner.
Central to this cabinet exhibition is a five-part panorama of Rome painted by Graz-born painter Friedrich Loos in 1850. Loos was living in Rome during the revolutionary year of 1848, when a popular uprising took place against the church-state. House-to-house battles and industrialization began to change the city's appearance: "Loos suspected that Rome stood at a turning point in its history and in future would take on a different physiognomy: he planned to capture a comprehensive image of this world city in its current form on canvas."
For his view of ancient Rome in morning light, Loos chose the elevation of Villa Mattei with the park of Monte Celio as his location to paint. The true to detail depiction directs our view from the garden of the villa over the ancient and medieval monuments far beyond to the Campagna.
In cooperation with the Kupferstichkabinett, in this cabinet exhibition the Nationalgalerie shows additional representations of Roman urban landscape from the first half of the nineteenth century, especially popular in the realm of printmaking, which made Rome once again a place of longing. In accordance with conservation guidelines, the loans from the Kupferstichkabinett will be replaced by two paintings from the collection of the Nationalgalerie on 20 November 2016.
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