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Alte Nationalgalerie - To discover
Actually there are three museums "Galeries" displaying paintings (and sculptures) in Berlin.
This one called "Alte" is the oldest for the building built around 1870 on the Museumsinsel but not for the collection which is from the 19th century.
The collection of ancient paintings called Gemäldegalerie, one of the best in Europe, from 14th to 18th century is located in a modern building at the Kulturforum. At this Kulturforum Potsdammer Platz stands also the Neue Nationalgalerie with 20th century works.
The paintings on display at the Alte Nationalgalerie are mainly from German painters as could be expected but there are some very good works of French Impressionists. They were the main reason for my visit but very soon I got interested by the German painters especially the Realists and in another genre the Romanticism and Idealism schools.
It's always a pleasure to discover new - at least for me - works of art.
There are three floors.
On the first are on display a number of paintings with a fine sense of coloring of Adolph Menzel and Anton von Werner with subjects of Prussian history such as the occupation of Paris after the French defeat of 1870. Surprising is that painting "A billet outside Paris" showing Uhlans, their boots full of mud, occupying a saloon of the castle of Brunoy and singing Schubert's "Das Meer" with piano accompaniment!
The 2nd floor shows a collection of high quality Impressionist paintings, the main reason of my visit. I much liked a beautiful Claude Monet "Saint-Germain-l'Auxerrois à Paris", an Edouard Manet "Jardin d'Hiver" and that lovely Renoir "Children's Afternoon at Wargemont".
But these French Impressionists should not hide the German painters.
Among the Realists Max Liebermann ("Infant school in Amsterdam") is much interesting.
I much liked the amazing "Tilla Durieux as Circe" by Franz von Stuck.
The visit is well worth for those who want to enlarge their 19th century horizon of paintings.
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Old National gallery
Old building of National gallery was constructed in 1876, it is a mixture of neo Classicism and neo Renaissance. It looks a bit like a church or temple.
Old building of National gallery houses the paintings of 19th century. It has paintings of such famous people as Auguste Rodin, Claude Monet and others.
Building itself is located in so called Museum Island and belongs to UNESCO World heritage list.
Alte Nationalgalerie, part of Museum Island, is a gallery showing a collection of Classical, Romantic, Biedermeier, Impressionist and early Modersnist artwork. The National Gallery was founded in 1861 after donations of 262 paintings by banker Johann Wagener. At the beginning it was called Wagener's collection.
The building of the gallery, shaped like a Roman temple, occupying the central part of the Museum Island and was finished in 1872. The collection contains works of the most prominent German artists, such as Karl Friedrich Shinkel, Karl Blechen, Adolph von Menzel, Max Liebermann, Friedrich Monch and some of French Impressionist such as Claude Monet and Edouard Manet.
The gallery houses the largest collections of 19th century sculptures and paintings in Germany.
This is Berlin's museum for 19th century art. The collection here is especially strong in German Romantic painting: this is the place to see some of the great Casper David Friedrich's moody and melancholic masterpieces.
The Alte Nationalgalerie also has a decent collection of French Impressionist works. I wasn't quite so interested in the work of "academic" German painters from the later 19th century.
An equestrian statue of King Friedrich Wilhelm IV (r. 1840-1861) stands in front of the museum.
There is also a large exhibition space here that displays travelling and temporary shows.
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