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The Relevance of RomanticismEssays on German Romantic Philosophy$
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Dalia Nassar

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199976201

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199976201.001.0001

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The Simplicity of the Sublime

The Simplicity of the Sublime

A New Picturing of Nature in Caspar David Friedrich

Chapter:
(p.186) 10 The Simplicity of the Sublime
Source:
The Relevance of Romanticism
Author(s):

Laure Cahen-Maurel

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199976201.003.0011

After Hegel’s famous philosophical dismissal of the sublime for its inadequacy, and in a postmodern age deprived of theological doctrines, there is increasing evidence for the relevance of Caspar David Friedrich’s romantic landscape painting for contemporary artists who seek to continue the tradition of the sublime. However, before inquiring into the problem of the current relevance of romanticism, this paper asks an apparently simpler question: Is there such a thing as a Friedrichian sublime, and if yes, what exactly is it? The first difficulty faced by commentators when dealing with his painting is to distinguish the sublime in Friedrich from the Kantian sublime without eliminating the category altogether. In order to answer this question the chapter investigates the role assigned to the sublime by Friedrich himself as stated in his principal text and in relation to his paintings.

Keywords:   Caspar David Friedrich, painting, sublime, veiling, Rückenfigur, imagination, Kant, Novalis, Anish Kapoor

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