Theobald Schorn came to Ahrenshoop in the 1890s. Extensive travels had previously taken the graduate of the Munich Art Academy through the countries of the Near and Far East as far as Tibet. The interest of European artists in these unknown worlds was triggered in no small measure by the archaeological excavations of the 19th century in Egypt and the Near East. What had been published of these in writing and pictures fired the painters' imagination, aroused their wanderlust and the search for new subjects. Schorn, too, had devoted himself to the so-called Oriental genre for some time before he decided to swap the wide world and the Bavarian mountains familiar to him for the lonely Ahrenshoop. Here he developed into a subtle portraitist of an unspectacular landscape. Snow-covered farmsteads, his own house, sparsely overgrown sand dunes and the sea as a mirror of the sky became subjects that now challenged him. Pieces of forest were also part of the artist's repertoire, and occasionally he seems to have approached the metaphorically interpretive conception of neighbours in the artists' colony such as Hugo Richter-Lefensdorf and Elisabeth von Eicken with his forest pictures. In favour of a calm and cohesive overall impression, Schorn largely dispensed with novellistic elements in his painting. In the small dune picture painted around the turn of the century, he concentrated entirely on the atmospheric qualities of the simple motif. The fine brushwork and precise choice of colours reveal his skill. A differentiated spectrum of soft green and ochre tones unfolds a highly lively play of light and shadow in the lower half of the picture. Above, the half-obscured clouds of a high summer sky merely hint at the sloping terrain to the beach with its view of the sea. The view from below gives the motif something imposing and prominent. The sparseness of the view points beyond itself into the distance.


  • Title: Dunes
  • Creator: Theobald Schorn (1866-1913)
  • Date Created: 1900
  • Physical Dimensions: 16,5 x 38,7 cm
  • Type: Painting
  • Rights: Ahrenshoop Art Museum, all rights reserved.
  • Medium: Oil on canvas, laminated on wood panel

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