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Description - Beyond the Light: Identity and Place in Nineteenth-Century Danish Art by Freyda Spira

Placing artists at the center of nineteenth-century Demark’s dramatic cultural, political, and philosophical transformation, this publication explores their persistent national pride in a time of turmoil

Nineteenth-century Danish artists experienced one of the most tumultuous periods in their nation’s history, from the disastrous siege of Copenhagen to the collapse of Denmark’s monarchy and the swelling tide of nationalism that eventually engulfed all of Europe. Bringing together 90 drawings, paintings, and oil sketches by Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg, Christen Købke, Constantin Hansen, Martinus Rørbye, Johan Thomas Lundbye, and Vilhelm Hammershøi, this publication explores the art from the period that was known as the Danish Golden Age but was in fact a time of great economic and political turmoil. Five thematic essays by leading scholars in Denmark and the United States explore the way Danish artists manifested the pride, traditions, and anxieties of their nation; the sea’s ever-changing role as a marker of Danish identity; the evolving nature of portraiture; nostalgia for the Danish landscape and folk traditions; and the influence on Danish artists of their travels throughout Europe.

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