The view is from Blechen’s flat at 9 Kochstraße in Berlin. Abandoning the traditional schemata of landscape painting, Blechen risked an unusual composition that seems more like a detail from a larger work. On the right is the corner of the roof of the house, while on the left is an open view of the backyard and the adjoining garden. It has just rained and there are puddles in the yard. The roof reflects the gentle light. The subtly gradated colours create a muted atmosphere. For this work Blechen chose an utterly unspectacular motif from everyday life, simply painting what he saw, spontaneously and expressively — a daring move later taken up and further developed by Adolph Menzel.


  • Title: View of Roofs and Gardens
  • Creator: Carl Blechen
  • Date Created: around 1835
  • Physical Dimensions: w26.0 x h20.0 cm
  • Type: Painting
  • Technique and material: Oil on canvas
  • Inv.-No.: A I 319/5
  • ISIL-No.: DE-MUS-815114
  • External link: Alte Nationalgalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
  • Copyrights: Text: © Prestel Verlag / Alte Nationalgalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, Photo: © b p k - Photo Agency / Nationalgalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin / Jörg P. Anders
  • Collection: Nationalgalerie, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
  • Artist biography: Carl Blechen was a German landscape painter. After an apprenticeship as a banker, Blechen started his art studies at the Academy of Arts in Berlin in 1822. He made various study tours within Germany and spent some time in Italy before becoming a professor at the Academy of Arts in Berlin in 1835. The well known architect Karl Friedrich Schinkel appreciated his works and strongly recommended him for the post. Blechen repudiated Romanticism and was an exponent of a new realism. Considered a pioneer for his brilliant effects of light and colour, many of his paintings are distinguished by their brightness, rendered with a lightness of touch. 'View of Assisi' (1832–35) and 'Palm House on the Pfaueninsel near Potsdam' (1832–34) are among his most famous compositions.
  • Artist Place of Death: Berlin, Germany
  • Artist Place of Birth: Cottbus, Germany
  • Artist Dates: 1798-07-29/1840-07-23

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