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Lifespan: 1774 - 1840
Nationality: German painter
Gender: male
Collection: 147 paintings

Casper David Friedrich was an influential German artist who was born in 1744 and died after a long career of fusing his art with complex philosophy in 1840. Though he trained for four years at the Academy of Copenhagen, he returned to Dresden, Germany upon the completion of his studies. Early in his career he won the Prize of the Weimar Friends of Art which was an asset in exposing him to wealthy potential patrons of Germany, many of whom would come to support Casper David Friedrich artwork for years to come. Several years later Friedrich began to teach at the Dresden Academy and stayed there for the remainder of his life. The paintings of Casper David Friedrich are largely credited with reviving German landscape painting and allowing it to gain a new relevance in the context of Friedrich’s philosophical beliefs. These beliefs were frequently a source of debate between critics and the increased exposure and perceived controversy only served to elevate the popularity of the new ideas and oil paintings of Casper Friedrich. Two of the most controversial aspects of the paintings of Casper Friedrich were related to his beliefs regarding religion and symbolism within his landscape paintings and also his commentary on the political events occurring during the time of his painting, especially those relating to his passionate nationalistic feelings about his homeland Germany. Because Casper Friedrich’s paintings tended to have a dark and brooding atmosphere, this made it less difficult for his critics to misinterpret the meanings in some of his religious-related landscapes. As an example, one painting called the Tetschen Altarpiece which contained a cross and a setting sun caused a debate regarding the place of landscapes and whether their contents could make symbolic statements about religion. Friedrich’s own view on the painting was that it could make a symbolic statement and did refer to the steadfast faith of man in God in the wake of a declining emphasis on organized religion. The depth with which Friedrich considered the meanings and motives behind the visual aspects of his work were deep to the point of classifying many of his feelings about his paintings as complex philosophies which were clearly affected by the events of his life, while also shaping the thoughts, philosophies, and decisions in his future. The paintings of Caspar Friedrich held a place of commentary in the political discourse occurring during the Napoleonic Wars, which like most Germans, harbored anti-French and pro-German nationalist sentiment. One of the most famous paintings by Caspar Friedrich that directly relates to these political events is titled Hope. Some of his other most well-known works are: Two Men, Looking at the Moon; Tree of Crows; The Wanderer Above the Sea; Abbey in the Oakwood; and Woman at Dawn. These works and many others are displayed particularly in Germany but also at the Hermitage in St. Petersburg and the Louvre in Paris, France.


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Abend (also known as Sonnenuntergang Hinter der Dresdener Hofkirche) (1824) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Abend (also known as Sonnenuntergang Hinter der Dresdener Hofkirche) (1824)

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At the stadtmauer Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

At the stadtmauer

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Baume und Straucher im Schnee (1828) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Baume und Straucher im Schnee (1828)

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Boat on the Elbe, in the morning fog (1825) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Boat on the Elbe, in the morning fog (1825)

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Boat on the Elbe, in the morning fog V2 Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Boat on the Elbe, in the morning fog V2

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Boats in the Harbour at Evening (1828) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Boats in the Harbour at Evening (1828)

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Boats in the Harbour at Evening (1828) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Boats in the Harbour at Evening (1828)

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Bohemian Landscape with Mount Milleschauer (1808) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Bohemian Landscape with Mount Milleschauer (1808)

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Bohmische landscape mountain landscape the two trees (1810) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Bohmische landscape mountain landscape the two trees (1810)

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Chalk Cliffs on Rugen (1818) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Chalk Cliffs on Rugen (1818)

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City at moonrise (1817) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

City at moonrise (1817)

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Cloister Cemetery in the Snow (1817-19) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Cloister Cemetery in the Snow (1817-19)

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Cross in the Forest (1820) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Cross in the Forest (1820)

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Cross in the Mountains (1808) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Cross in the Mountains (1808)

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Dolmen in the Fall (1820) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Dolmen in the Fall (1820)

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Drifting Clouds (1820) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Drifting Clouds (1820)

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Drifting Clouds (1820) v2 Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Drifting Clouds (1820) v2

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Early Snow (1828) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Early Snow (1828)

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Easter Morning (1833) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Easter Morning (1833)

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Elblandschaft (1823) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Elblandschaft (1823)

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Evening Landscape with Two Men (1830-35) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Evening Landscape with Two Men (1830-35)

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Evening on the Baltic (1831) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Evening on the Baltic (1831)

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Felspartie (1811) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Felspartie (1811)

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Fir Trees in the Snow (1828) Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Fir Trees in the Snow (1828)

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Flat country shank at Greifswalder Bodden Paintings | Caspar David Friedrich paintings

Flat country shank at Greifswalder Bodden

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