Air is the subject of the Museum Kranenburgh collection’s most famous work: Autumn by Leo Gestel. Painted in 1909 by one the Bergen School’s leading figures, it is a small painting, but a grand painterly experiment. A menacing, cloudy Dutch sky extends over almost the entire canvas. Gestel painted the experience of being outdoors at the mercy of the elements.

the Bergen School

A hundred years ago, Bergen became a place where an artistic vanguard flocked, forever confirming the town’s association with art notable for its experimentation and expression. What attracted artists who settled in Bergen was the natural beauty, light, sky, and sea. The pleasure of working ‘after nature’ could be thoroughly enjoyed in Bergen, and once here, people tended to stay. Although the climate and environment were hardly contemporaneous issues, artists paid considerable attention to nature’s beauty and the power of the elements.

Museum Kranenburgh’s collection features many landscape depictions. This presentation focuses on portrayals of the sky. From foreboding firmament above the polder to blistering summer landscape, these paintings translate a plethora of moods and impressions.

This collection presentation was made possible in part by the Friends of Museum Kranenburgh Foundation and the Rabobank