Special presentation: January 22–May 22, 2016
Made possible by the Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach-Stiftung.
With “Monk by the Sea" and “Abbey in the Oakwood" by Caspar David Friedrich, the Nationalgalerie in Berlin is the custodian of German Romanticism's most famous pair of paintings. With a singular radicalism of composition and technique, the artist addresses the relationships between knowledge and belief, this world and the next, life and death. Friedrich has created two pictorial formulae, as simple as they are profound, which today still speak to people the world over. Ever since Clemens Brentano's and Heinrich von Kleist's famous interpretations, they have been the subject of numerous interpretations and treatments, from art through literature to psychology and press photography.
However, soon after his death in 1840, Caspar David Friedrich slipped into oblivion and was first rediscovered at the turn of the 20th century. The Nationalgalerie played an important role here, when in the 1906 “Centenary Exhibition of German Art 1775 — 1875" it displayed altogether 35 of Friedrich's paintings, thereby bringing him once more to the attention of a wider public.
Beginning January 22nd 2016, the paintings “Monk by the Sea" and “Abbey in the Oakwood" will be on view in the exhibition "Monk returns" at the Alte Nationalgalerie, alongside the special presentation on restoration that will be on display until May 22nd 2016.