About this artwork
Lush palms and overgrown greenery dominate this view of the Palm House, a country estate designed by Karl Friedrich Schinkel to display the Prussian royals’ collection of tropical plants. This painting plays with the boundaries between architecture and nature, imagination and reality: vines curl around soaring columns and bowed fronds evoke archways. Carl Blechen populated his dazzlingly specific place-portrait with a leisure scene derived from colonialist fantasies of non-European women. The artist dressed the figures in rich textiles that echo the building’s colors and motifs, as if he considered them an extension of the décor.
- Carl Blechen
- The Interior of the Palm House on the Pfaueninsel Near Potsdam
- Germany (Artist's nationality)
- Oil on canvas
- 135 × 126 cm (52 1/2 × 50 in.)
- Through prior acquisitions of the George F. Harding Collection; L.L. and A.S. Coburn and Alexander A. McKay endowments; through prior gift of William Wood Prince; through prior acquisitions of the Charles H. and Mary F.S. Worcester Endowment