Those of us on the East Coast of the U.S. have so far been experiencing an unusually mild winter; not so for most of the rest of the Northern Hemisphere. In Europe it must seem as though the North Pole has shifted into your back yard.
For those who need to be reminded of winter’s beauty — for one reason or another, Kunsthaus Zürich has mounted an exhibition titled Winter Tales: Winter in art from the Renaissance to Impressionism.
The exhibition not only collects an interesting assortment of paintings and art objects from various times and places, but goes beyond winter landscapes to subjects as diverse as Napoleon’s retreat from Moscow and Dutch still life paintings that focus on food specific to the season and permitted during a time of abstinence.
The exhibition features Brueghel’s Winter Landscape with Bird Trap, (images above, top), credited was the first independent landscape in European art (i.e. not as a background for religious, mythological or other subjects).
Also featured is Monet’s iconic ode to winter, The Magppie (above, third from bottom).
There is a website devoted to the exhibition that features a slideshow of featured works. The images are linked to larger versions. There is also a catalog of the exhibition, with text in German (more here).
Winter Tales: Winter in art from the Renaissance to Impressionism is on view until 29 April, 2012.
(Images above: Pieter Brueghel the Younger, Jan Asselijn, Jan Davidsz de Heem, Gysbrecht Lytens, Joseph Ferdinand Boissard de Boisdenier, Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro, Akseli Gallen-Kallela)