Arnold Boecklin

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Boecklin, Arnold


Born Oct. 16, 1827, in Basel, Switzerland; died Jan. 16, 1901, in San Domenico di Fiesole, Italy. Swiss painter.

Boecklin studied in Düsseldorf (1845–47) and worked in Basel, Munich, and Italy. Wishing to avoid depicting reality, he created an imaginary world in his pictures, often purposely mysterious. At first, he painted romantic landscapes with mythological figures; later, fantastic scenes with nymphs, sea monsters, and so on (Triton and Nereid, 1873–74). His later compositions (Island of the Dead, 1880, Museum of Art in Basel), in which artificial symbolism was combined with naturalistically authentic details, had an influence on German symbolism and Jugendstil. Boecklin’s pictures are painted in bright, harsh colors, mainly with tempera.


Schmidt, G. Boecklin heute. Basel, 1951.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Rachmaninoff composed a splendid Tone Poem entitled Isle of the Dead based on Arnold Boecklin's painting of the same subject whilst Mussorgsky, who had organised an exhibition of paintings by Viktor Hartmann, composed musical impressions of the paintings for piano.
There he came under the influence of the painter Arnold Boecklin whose fantasy world included mysterious islands painted in the most violent colors and many of whose canvases inspired musical creations, especially those of composer Sergei Rachmaninoff.
Coeditor Suzanne Marchand uses a broad brush to present a detailed survey of Swiss painter Arnold Boecklin's evolution from a young witness to the revolutions of 1848 to his rise to fame as the most popular German painter at the turn of the twentieth century.
For example, I might ask my students to look at the painting The Isle of the Dead by Arnold Boecklin and simultaneously listen to the musical piece of the same name by Rachmaninoff.