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Artists’ Beloved Travel Destinations as Seen Through Their Art

St. Germain near Tunis
Paul Klee, Garden in St. Germain, The European Quarter Near Tunis, 1914, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City, USA.

Art Travels

Artists’ Beloved Travel Destinations as Seen Through Their Art

The Summer months are upon us; a time generally seen as an opportunity for traveling. A time for flying to far off destinations; a respite from our usual lives. Some of us want to experience the beaches; others, mountains or even the desert climate. While they may be lesser or well known travel destinations, below are listed several locations to consider for future travel.

Georgia O’Keefe had Hawaii. Many Impressionist artists had the north of France. Edward Hopper loved Cape Cod. Additionally, as you will see below, there were and are many other travel destinations around the world where artists have found inspiration throughout history. Whether they lived in the location they depicted, or were merely passing through, these places left a lasting mark for a reason.

Travel Destinations by the Sea

Gustav Klimt

The Austrian artist, known for his art nouveau style, found respite at Lake Attersee in Austria. While it is very much unlike his portrait paintings, it is a beautiful glimpse of the Austrian landscape.

Klimt Lake Attersee
Artists’ Beloved Travel Destinations: Gustav Klimt, On Lake Attersee, 1900, Leopold Museum, Vienna, Austria.

Johan Christian Dahl

This particular painting is of an island off the coast of Italy. Today, it is much less crowded than its counterpart, Capri, and offers beautiful beaches and thermal spas to enjoy.

Johan Christian Dahl, From Ischia
Artists’ Beloved Travel Destinations: Johan Christian Dahl, From Ischia, 1820, KODE Art Museums, Bergen, Norway.

Edvard Munch

Perhaps Munch’s most famous painting, The Scream, shows a glimpse of a fjord in Norway. Likewise, below is a closer glimpse of a similar landscape featuring a body of water late at night.

Munch Moonlight 1895
Artists’ Beloved Travel Destinations: Edvard Munch, Moonlight, 1895, The National Museum for Art, Architecture, and Design, Oslo, Norway.

Caspar David Friedrich

Friedrich painted this after a trip to the German island, where he spent his honeymoon. It is typical of Romanticism and the figures are dwarfed by the natural elements surrounding them. Above all, the focus is on the white cliffs overlooking the sea.

Caspar David Friedrich Chalk cliffs of Rugen, travel destinations
Artists’ Beloved Travel Destinations: Caspar David Friedrich, Chalk Cliffs on Rügen, c. 1818, Kunst Museum Winterthur, Winterthur, Germany.

Philipp Hackert

This Italian gulf is located just outside of Naples but maintains a life of its own. That is to say, it is an area rich with history. As is seen below, Hackert depicted a scene looking towards the gulf, including steaming volcanoes in the area.

Hackert gulf of Pozzuoli
Artists’ Beloved Travel Destinations: Philipp Hackert, View of the Gulf of Pozzuoli from Solfatara, 1803, The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, USA.

Travel Destinations with Castles

Ferdinand Runk

Runk was a German-Austrian landscape painter, etcher, and draftsman. The court artist spent a great deal of time in Český Krumlov. The city, which surrounds the Český Krumlov castle, was designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1992.

Ferdinand Runk Cescky Krumlov Castle
Artists’ Beloved Travel Destinations: Ferdinand Runk, Český Krumlov Castle with Lazebnicky Bridge and Castle Tower, ca. beginning of the 19th century, Source: State Castle and Chateau Cesky Krumlov, Czech Republic.

Pavel Künl

Künl painted a portion of what is known as “Fish Market” in the capital city of Slovenia. The area is now filled with more charm, because the new merges with the old of the historical market. The Ljubljana Castle sits at the top of a hill in the background of the painting. Unfortunately, now it is closed due to recent events; however, the castle is usually open to the public to visit.

Pavel Kunl, Fish Square, travel destinations
Artists’ Beloved Travel Destinations: Pavel Künl, Ljubljana, Ribji trg Square, 1847, The National Gallery of Slovenia, Ljubljana, Slovenia.

Travel Destinations to the Deserts of the World

Jeroen Krabbé

The Dutch artist, actor, and director has traveled the world capturing landscapes and more with his paintbrush and camera. His painting below of the Salta region of Argentina showcases that the region offers more than meets the eye. While most people might look to Patagonia for their next trip, why not consider Salta? For example, the area is rich in history, dating back to the Inca Empire.

Krabbé, Salta Argentina travel destinations
Artists’ Beloved Travel Destinations: Jeroen Krabbé, Quebrada de Cafayete- Salta, Argentina, 2009, Location unknown, Source: artist’s website.

Paul Klee

The Swiss-German artist visited Tunisia with two other artists in 1914 for a brief period. As a result of his trip, Klee found his way as an artist, because the country deeply inspired him. Tunisia sits on North Africa’s coast, with the Mediterranean to the north and the Sahara to the south, and is therefore perfect for anyone looking for adventurous travel destinations. Regardless, travelers often over-look the nation for the more well-known Egypt and Morocco. The capital, Tunis, offers a little something for everyone, for instance, ruins, beaches, and beautiful architecture. Klee’s painting, however, is of the city of Kairouan, which is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Paul Klee, Kairouan, Tunisia
Artists’ Beloved Travel Destinations: Paul Klee, Kairouan, 1914, Source: Tunisia Tourism, 2020.

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Art historian (art lover, artist), coffee drinker, writer, Mom to 2 girls. BA in History and an MA in Art History. Favorite art style is Impressionism. Favorite theme is the Annunciation. Located in Central Kansas.



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