who did caspar david friedrich influence
Though based on studies of nature, most of his paintings were composed in his studio, where he relied on deep contemplation to conjure up images for his canvases. To dramatise his view-paintings, such as his series of figures contemplating the moon, he made frequent use of the Ruckenfigur– a person seen from behind, who is contemplating the view. Nearly all his pictures contained motifs and symbols, typically concerning life, death and the impermanence of man.
In 1810, Friedrich was elected a member of the Berlin Academy of Art, and in 1818, a member of the Saxon Academy. In the same year, at the age of 44 he married the 25 year old Caroline Bommer: a marriage which reportedly brought him much happiness and comfort. In this, one should note that Friedrich suffered continually from bouts of depression, notably in 1799, 1813, 1816 and between 1803 and 1805, and 1824-1826. These mental disturbances had a visible impact on his painting, and from 1826 his use of colour in his paintings became darker and more muted.
Friedrich’s reputation steadily declined over the final fifteen years of his life. As the ideals of early Romanticism passed from fashion, he came to be viewed as an eccentric and melancholy character, out of touch with the times. Gradually his patrons fell away.  By 1820, he was living as a recluse and was described by friends as the “most solitary of the solitary”.  Towards the end of his life he lived in relative poverty.  He became isolated and spent long periods of the day and night walking alone through woods and fields, often beginning his strolls before sunrise.
In June 1835, Friedrich suffered his first stroke, which left him with minor limb paralysis and greatly reduced his ability to paint.  As a result, he was unable to work in oil; instead he was limited to watercolour, sepia and reworking older compositions.
Although he was supported by patrons through most of his career, in his later life the thrill of the Romantic Movement faded, and Friedrich was somewhat forgotten. It wasn’t until the 20th century, that Friedrich’s work was re-discovered by the Norwegian art historian, Andreas Aubert, who brought his works to light for modern scholarship. Edvard Munch, Max Ernst, and other surrealists came to view Friedrich’s works as a source of inspiration. Even today, contemporary artists look to the mystical landscapes as a guiding example for creativity and humanity.
September 05, 2018
Some of Friedrich’s contemporaries attributed the melancholy in his art to these childhood events, yet it is as likely that Friedrich’s personality was naturally so inclined. As an adult, the pale and withdrawn Friedrich reinforced the popular notion of the “taciturn man from the North”. His letters, however, always contained humour and self-irony. In his autobiography, the natural philosopher Gotthilf Heinrich von Schubert wrote of Friedrich, “He was indeed a strange mixture of temperament, his moods ranging from the gravest seriousness to the gayest humour … But anyone who knew only this side of Friedrich’s personality, namely his deep melancholic seriousness, only knew half the man. I have met few people who have such a gift for telling jokes and such a sense of fun as he did, providing that he was in the company of people he liked.”
In 1790, Friedrich began to study art with Johann Gottfried Quistorp at the University of Greifswald, and literature and aesthetics with the Swedish professor Thomas Thorild. Thorild was interested in the contemporary English aesthetic, and taught Friedrich to distinguish between the spiritual ‘inner eye’ and the less favourable physical ‘outer eye’. Friedrich entered the prestigious Academy of Copenhagen in 1794 where he studied under teachers such as Christian August Lorentzen and the landscape painter Jens Juel. These artists were inspired by the Sturm und Drang movement, and represented a midpoint between the dramatic intensity and expressive manner of the budding Romantic aesthetic and the by then waining neo-classical form. Mood was paramount, and influence was drawn from such sources as the Icelandic legend of Edda and Ossian, and Nordic folklore. A talented student, Friedrich began his education at the academy by making copies of casts from antique sculptures, before proceeding to drawing from life. He was keenly interested in seventeenth-century Dutch landscape painting, to which he had access at Copenhagen’s Royal Picture Gallery.
The major difference between Kinkade and his inspirer is that Kinkade has found enormous success through his landscapes which seek virtues of a simpler lifestyle and his spiritual themes.
An image derived from the hills of eastern Saxony