The light remains!
Violet Shadows – a painting full of light and air!
The search for new, unused ways of expression lead to the foundation of artists' colonies throughout large swathes of Europe.
Art discovers the fishing village on the Trave
Taking only the bare necessities for their craft with them, young artists began to explore the region around the city with a deep desire to find fresh landscapes and the simplicity of life. Turning their backs on the strict teachings of academic life, they observed and preserved all that they saw in sketches and impressionistic works deemed to be “outrageously colorful”.
Networking – an accord between art schools
starting in the middle 1880's, more and more artists came to the fishing village. Many lived with hosts in nearby Isrealsdorf or directly in Gothmund with the fishermen. The village was no longer a well kept secret: young students spent their summer holidays together and trade lists of the “best locations to paint”. They studied at the grand-ducal Sächsischen Kunstschule Weimar (Carl Arp, Carl Malchin, Christian Rohlfs, Anton Nissen, Andreas Dirks), the grand-ducal Badischen Kunstschule Karlsruhe (Ernst Eitner, Georg Burmester) and the Duesseldorfer Kunstakademie (Ernst Eitner, Georg Burmester, Gustav Wendling, Andreas Dirks).
Gothmund remains unique – it will not become a second Worpswede!
The artists were only “visiting guests”. The industrial development along the Trave in Siems and Kuecknitz, as well as the iron shipbuilders wharf in Karlshof quite close to the village, brought an uncomfortable and very loud end to the idyllic scenery. In 1893, a catastrophic fire (7 of the 21 cottages were lost to the flames), added to the reason for young artists to search for and reside in other places – in contrast to other artists' colonies, for example the Kuenstlerkolonie Worpswede near Bremen. Their pictures preserve this unique pearl along the banks of the Trave to this day.