Influences should be shared…and honored.
Above image is the forth in the series “The Seasons“, by Anselm Kiefer for the New York Times, 2010.
Lesson / Koan : Landscapes has both exteriors & interiors.
Anselm Kiefer observed Caspar David Friedrich closely. Enough so, that landscape is the common ground between them. A landscape of History !
C.D. Friedrich said, “The artist should paint not only what he sees before him, but also what he sees within him. If, however, he sees nothing within him, then he should also refrain from painting that which he sees before him.”
The Wreck of the Hope—also known as The Polar Sea or The Sea of Ice (1823–24)—
perhaps best summarizes Friedrich’s ideas and aims at this point, though in such a radical way that the painting was not well received. Completed in 1824, it depicted a grim subject, a shipwreck in the Arctic Ocean; “the image he produced, with its grinding slabs of travertine-colored floe ice chewing up a wooden ship, goes beyond documentary into allegory: the frail bark of human aspiration crushed by the world’s immense and glacial indifference.”
In between the artistic works of Friedrich & Kiefer, is another sea vessel of note.
SS Utopia was a transatlantic passenger steamship built in 1874 by Robert Duncan & Co of Glasgow. In 1874–1882 she operated on Anchor Line routes from Glasgow to New York City, from Glasgow to Bombay and from London to New York City. Since 1882 she carried Italian immigrants to the United States.
On 17 March 1891, the SS Utopia accidentally collided with the battleship HMS Anson in the Bay of Gibraltar. SS Utopia sank in less than twenty minutes. The sinking of Utopia was blamed on “grave error of judgment” of its captain John McKeague, who survived the accident.
The wreck of SS Utopia was raised in July 1892 and brought back to Scotland. The owners gave up their plans of reviving the ship, and she was left to rust in the River Clyde and was finally scrapped in 1900.