Symbolism

Magnificent Mountain Landscapes by Ferdinand Hodler

Zuzanna Stańska 3 July 2022 min Read

Ferdinand Hodler was the most influential Swiss artist in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Hodler’s beautiful mountain landscapes were, in his own words, to bring out “nature’s essential beauty”. Sadly, he 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. See Ferdinand Holder’s magnificent vistas of the Swiss Alps!

In the mid to late 19th century, the Swiss landscape was overrun by tourists for the first time, and the country began to experience the full effects of industrial development. Hodler’s landscapes were, in contrast, pristine, without a trace of the Industrial Revolution. The Hodler’s nature is ideal.

For Hodler, landscape painting had a philosophical dimension. The painter’s goal was to reveal the laws of nature and of the world through a patient, structured study of the location.

Ferdinand Hodler, Lake Thun from Leissig, 1904,
Ferdinand Hodler, Lake Thun from Leissig, 1904, Kunstmuseum Bern, Bern, Switzerland.
Ferdinand Hodler, The Dent Blanche, 1916,
Ferdinand Hodler, Die Dents Blanches, 1916, private collection. Wikimedia Commons (public domain).
Ferdinand Hodler, Thunersee and Stockhornkette in Winter
Ferdinand Hodler, Thunersee and Stockhornkette in Winter, private collection. Wikimedia Commons (public domain).
Ferdinand Hodler, Lake Thun, Symmetric Reflection, 1905,
Ferdinand Hodler, Lake Thun, Symmetric Reflection, 1905, Musée d`art et d`histoire, Geneve, Switzerland.
Ferdinand Hodler, Le Monch in the Clouds, 1911, private collection.
Ferdinand Hodler, Der Mönch mit Wolken, 1911, Thomas Schmidheiny Collection. Wikimedia Commons (public domain).
Ferdinand Hodler, The Dents du Midi from Champéry, 1916,
Ferdinand Hodler, The Dents du Midi from Champéry, 1916, Nestlé Art Collection, Switzerland.
Ferdinand Hodler, Das Lauterbrunner Breithorn, 1911, Kunstmuseum, St. Gallen, Switzerland.
Ferdinand Hodler, Das Lauterbrunner Breithorn, 1911, Kunstmuseum, St. Gallen, Switzerland.
Ferdinand Hodler, La pointe d'Andey, vallée de l'Arve , 1909, Musée d'Orsay, Paris, France.
Ferdinand Hodler, La pointe d’Andey, vallée de l’Arve , 1909, Musée d’Orsay, Paris, France. Flickr.
Ferdinand Hodler, Thunersee Von Leissigen.
Ferdinand Hodler, Lake Thun. Painting Mania.
Ferdinand Hodler, Mount Niesen seen from Heustrich, 1910, Kunstmuseum Basel, Switzerland.
Ferdinand Hodler, Mount Niesen Seen from Heustrich, 1910, Kunstmuseum Basel, Switzerland.

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