Ferdinand Hodler is the most influential Swiss artist in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The most popular paintings by Hodler have been his landscapes which in his own words, bring out “nature’s essential beauty”. Sadly, Hodler saw himself primarily as a figure painter, and made his reputation through large, figurative compositions with cosmic symbolic themes that preoccupied many late-19th-century European artists.
In the mid- to late 19th century, the Swiss landscape was overrun by tourists for the first time, and Switzerland began to experience the full effects of industrial development. Hodler’s landscapes is untouched, without a trace of the industrial age. The Hodler’s nature is ideal.
For Hodler, landscape painting had a philosophical dimension. Painter’s goal was to reveal the laws of nature and of the world through a patient, structured study of the location.