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Ferdinand Hodler

Paintings, Drawings, Illustrations

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - Walk Along The Border Of A Wood by Ferdinand Hodler

Walk Along The Border Of A Wood

Ferdinand Hodler Drawing - Study For Views Towards Infinity by Ferdinand Hodler

Study For Views Towards Infinity

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - Lake Thun And Brienz With Freiburg Simmental Bull by Ferdinand Hodler

Lake Thun And Brienz With Freiburg Simmental Bull

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - The Dents Du Midi by Ferdinand Hodler

The Dents Du Midi

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - Joyful Woman by Ferdinand Hodler

Joyful Woman

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - Cows At Lakeshore by Ferdinand Hodler

Cows At Lakeshore

Ferdinand Hodler Drawing - Disappointed by Ferdinand Hodler


Ferdinand Hodler Painting - Girl Arranging Flowers. Girl With Carnation by Ferdinand Hodler

Girl Arranging Flowers. Girl With Carnation

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - The Mower by Ferdinand Hodler

The Mower

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - Interior Of St Pierre Cathedral Geneva by Ferdinand Hodler

Interior Of St Pierre Cathedral Geneva

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - Autumn Evening by Ferdinand Hodler

Autumn Evening

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - Lake Geneva With Jura. Landscape Rhythm Of Forms by Ferdinand Hodler

Lake Geneva With Jura. Landscape Rhythm Of Forms

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - The Sacred Hour by Ferdinand Hodler

The Sacred Hour

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - Sailing Boat by Ferdinand Hodler

Sailing Boat

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - Stockhorn With Lake Thun by Ferdinand Hodler

Stockhorn With Lake Thun

Ferdinand Hodler Painting - The Dream Of The Shepherd by Ferdinand Hodler

The Dream Of The Shepherd

The Angry Warrior

The Angry Warrior

Lake Champfer

Lake Champfer

Landscape of the Swiss Alps

Students of Jena

The Chosen One

Lake Geneva from Chexbres

Lake Geneva from Chexbres

The Day

The night

Young freedom fighter

Women Walking

Portrait of Berthe Jacques, Wife of the Artist

Portrait of Louise-Delphine Duchosal

Portrait of General Ulrich Wille

A Troubled Soul

Aare Gorge

Evening mist on Thunersee

Adoration (III)


At the foot of Petit Saleve

At the foot of Petit Saleve

At the foot of Saleve

On the banks of the Manzanares


View of Fromberghorn from Reichenbach


At the Foot of Mt. Saleve

Rising mist over the Savoy Alps

Autumn Evening

Tree at Lake Brienz seen from Bodeli

Trees in the studio garden

At the Jonction

Mountain stream in Beatenberg

Mountain stream in Champery

Portrait of Berthe Jacques, Wife of the Artist

Portrait of a young woman

Portrait of Georges Navazza

Portrait of Gertrud Mueller

Portrait of James Vibert

Portrait of Laetitia Raviola

Portrait of Madame de R

Portrait of Mathias Morhardt

Portrait of Willy Russ

View into Infinity

Caux Landscape with Rising Clouds

Charlet in Hilterfingen

Cherry Tree in Bloom

Communication with Infinity

The prayer in the cathedral Saint-Pierre in Geneva,

The prayer in the cathedral Saint-Pierre in Geneva

Dents du Midi in Clouds

The Aare canal near Thun

The Angler

The Lake Geneva from Chexbres

The Lake Geneva from Lausanne

The Reaper

The Monk with clouds

The Monk


The Netmender


The pastor

The Orator

Saleve in autumn

The Fall In Silvaplana

The bull

The Student (Self Portrait)

Lake Thun From Lessig

The river Aare in Solothurn


Dents Blanches at Champéry in the morning sun

The Dents du Midi from Chesieres

The Dents du Midi

The Gantrisch

The Golden Meadow

The Maiden Of The Mist Over The Sea

The Lady Of The Isenfluh

The Chestnut Trees

The Small Plantane

The mill of Sous Terre in Geneva

The Black Lutschina

The Street to Evordes

Eiger Monch And Jungfrau In Moonlight

Lake Geneva from the Caux

Lake Geneva From Chexbres

Lake Geneva From Chexbres

Lake Geneva In Chexbres

Jungfrau and Silverhorn, as Seen from Murren

Das Jungfrauenmassiv von Mürren aus

Kahle Bäume im Tessin

Child by the table

View of Lake Leman from Chexbres

Lake Thun


Landscape at the Jonction at Geneva

Silence Of The Evening

Seated Bearded Man

Sunset on Lake Geneva from the Caux

Spanish Landscape

Walking at the forest edge


Sunset on Lake Geneva

Surprised by the Storm

Landscape in Ticino

The Angry One

The Beech Forest

The Breithorn

The Convalescent

The Dream

The Dying Valentine Gode-Darel

The Fir Tree

The Forest Interior near Reichenbach

The Good Samaritan

The Grand Muveran

The Lauterbrunner Breithorn I

The Nut Tree

The Reaper

The Sick Valentine Gode-Darel

Lake Thun with Stockhornkette in Winter

Lake Thun, Symmetric reflection

Lake Thun

Tired of Life

The Turner Banquet

Valentine Gode Darel with loose hair

View into Infinity

View of Lake Geneva from Saint-Prex

Forest with a mountain stream

Forest brook near Champery

Willow tree by the lake

Pastures at the Jonction at Geneva


Delighted woman

The Sensation

The Source

Truth II

View to Infinity

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Famous Artists - The Angry Warrior by Ferdinand Hodler

The Angry Warrior

Ferdinand Hodler (March 14, 1853 – May 19, 1918) was one of the best-known Swiss painters of the nineteenth century. His early works were portraits, landscapes, and genre paintings in a realistic style. Later, he adopted a personal form of symbolism he called Parallelism.

Early life

Hodler was born in Berne, the eldest of six children. His father, Jean Hodler, made a meager living as a carpenter; his mother, Marguerite (née Neukomm), was from a peasant family.[1] By the time Hodler was eight years old, he had lost his father and two younger brothers to tuberculosis. His mother remarried to a decorative painter, but in 1867 she too died of tuberculosis.[2] Eventually the disease killed all of Hodler's remaining siblings, instilling in the artist a powerful consciousness of mortality.[3]


Before he was ten, Hodler received training in decorative painting from his stepfather and, subsequently was sent to Thun to apprentice with a local painter, Ferdinand Sommer.[4] Hodler's earliest works were conventional landscapes, which he sold in shops and to tourists. In 1871, at the age of 18, he traveled on foot to Geneva to start his career as a painter. He attended science lectures at the Collège de Genève, and in the museum there he copied paintings by Alexandre Calame.[5] In 1873 he became a student of Barthélemy Menn, and investigated Dürer’s writings on proportions.[5]

He made a trip to Basel in 1875, where he studied the paintings of Hans Holbein—especially, Dead Christ in the Tomb, which influenced Hodler's many treatments of the theme of death.[6] He traveled to Madrid in 1878, where he stayed for several months and studied the works of masters such as Titian, Poussin, and Velázquez in the Museo del Prado.[5]

The works of Hodler's early maturity consisted of landscapes, figure compositions, and portraits, treated with a vigorous realism. In 1884, Hodler met Augustine Dupin (1852–1909), who became his companion and model for the next several years. Their son, Hector Hodler—who would found the World Esperanto Association in 1908—was born in 1887.[7]

From 1889 until their divorce in 1891, Hodler was married to Bertha Stucki, who is depicted in his painting, Poetry (1897, Museum für Gestaltung, Zürich).[8] In 1898, Hodler married Berthe Jacques.
Night, 1889-1890, Berne, Kunstmuseum

In the last decade of the nineteenth century his work evolved to combine influences from several genres including symbolism and art nouveau. In 1890 he completed Night, a work that marked Hodler's turn toward symbolist imagery.[5] It depicts several recumbent figures, all of them relaxed in sleep except for an agitated man who is menaced by a figure shrouded in black, which Hodler intended as a symbol of death.[9] Hodler developed a style he called "Parallelism" that emphasized the symmetry and rhythm he believed formed the basis of human society.[5] In paintings such as The Chosen One, groupings of figures are symmetrically arranged in poses suggestive of ritual or dance.

Hodler painted number of large-scale historical paintings, often with patriotic themes.[5] In 1897 he accepted a commission to paint a series of large frescoes for the Weapons Room of the Schweizerisches Landesmuseum in Zurich.[5] The compositions he proposed, including The Battle of Marignan which depicted a battle that the Swiss lost, were controversial for their imagery and style, and Hodler was not permitted to execute the frescoes until 1900.[10]

Hodler's work in his final phase took on an expressionist aspect with strongly coloured and geometrical figures. Landscapes were pared down to essentials, sometimes consisting of a jagged wedge of land between water and sky.
Valentine Godé-Darel on Her Sickbed, 1914, oil on canvas

In 1908, he met Valentine Godé-Darel, who became his mistress. She was diagnosed with cancer in 1913, and the many hours Hodler spent by her bedside resulted in a remarkable series of paintings documenting her decline from the disease.[11] Her death in January 1915 affected Hodler greatly. He occupied himself with work on a series of about 20 introspective self-portraits that date from 1916.

In 1914 he condemned the German atrocities conducted using artillery at Rheims.[11] In retaliation for this, German art museums excluded Hodler's work.
Swiss 50 Franc banknote from 1911 Series Two, Der Holzfäller by Hodler

By late 1917 his declining health led him to thoughts of suicide. He died on May 19, 1918 in Geneva leaving behind a number of unfinished works portraying the city.

Many of Hodler's best-known paintings are scenes in which characters are engaged in everyday activities, such as the famous woodcutter (Der Holzfäller, 1910, Musée d'Orsay, Paris). In 1908, the Swiss National Bank commissioned Hodler to create two designs for new paper currency. His designs were controversial: rather than portraits of famous men, Hodler chose to depict a woodcutter (for the 50 Swiss Franc bank note) and a reaper (for the 100 Franc note).[12] Both appeared in the 1911 Series Two of the notes.

According to the art historian Sepp Kern, Hodler "helped revitalize the art of monumental wall painting, and his work is regarded as embodying the Swiss federal identity."[5]

Hauptman and Hodler 2007, p. 9.
Hauptman and Hodler 2007, pp. 9–10.
Kunstmuseum, Bern: Fedinand Hodler Biography
Hauptman and Hodler 2007, p. 10.
Kern, Oxford Art Online.
Hauptman and Hodler 2007, p. 12.
Hauptman and Hodler 2007, p. 100.
Hauptman and Hodler 2007, pp. 43, 100.
Hodler 1983, p. 135
Hauptman and Hodler 2007, p. 43.
Hauptman and Hodler 2007 p. 36.

Hauptman and Hodler 2007, p. 31.


Fehlmann, Marc. Review of Oskar Bätschmann and Paul Müller eds., Ferdinand Hodler. Catalogue Raisonné der Gemälde, Die Landschaften, Zurich 2008: http://www.19thc-artworldwide.org/index.php/autumn09/ferdinand-hodler-catalogue-raisonne
Fischer, Matthias (2009). Der junge Hodler. Eine Künstlerkarriere 1872-1897, Wädenswil: Nimbus. ISBN 978-3-907142-30-1.
Hauptman, William, & Hodler, Ferdinand (2007). Hodler. Milan: 5 continents. ISBN 978-88-7439-362-6.
Hodler, Ferdinand, Franz Zelger, Lukas Gloor, Schweizerisches Institut für Kunstwissenschaft., & Seedamm-Kulturzentrum. (1981). Der frühe Hodler: Das Werk 1870-1890. Bern: Benteli. ISBN 3716503657.
Hodler, Ferdinand (1983). Ferdinand Hodler, 1853-1918: Paris, Musée du Petit Palais, 11 mai-24 juillet 1983 : Berlin, 2 mars-24 avril 1983 : Zürich, 19 août-23 octobre 1983. Paris: Association française d'action artistique. ISBN 2865450201.
Hodler, Ferdinand, Jill Lloyd, Ulf Küster, and Oskar Bätschmann (2012). Ferdinand Hodler: view to infinity. Ostfildern: Hatje Cantz. ISBN 978-3-7757-3380-9.
Kern, Sepp. "Hodler, Ferdinand". Grove Art Online. Oxford Art Online. Oxford University Press. Web.
Ferdinand Hodler. Catalogue raisonné der Gemälde. Landschaften. Band 1. Hrsg. vom Schweizerischen Institut für Kunstwissenschaft Zürich. Scheidegger & Spiess, Zürich 2008, ISBN 978-3-85881-244-5. (Band 1 enthält Teilband 1 [Kat. 1–300] und Teilband 2 [Kat. 301–626, D1–D52 (fragliche Zuschreibungen), R1–R70 (irrtümliche und falsche Zuschreibungen).]
Ferdinand Hodler. Catalogue raisonné der Gemälde. Bildnisse. Band 2. Hrsg. vom Schweizerischen Institut für Kunstwissenschaft Zürich. Scheidegger & Spiess, Zürich 2012, ISBN 978-3-85881-2554-1. ([Kat. 627–1055, Kat. D53–D68 (fragliche Zuschreibungen), Kat. R71–R105 (irrtümliche und falsche Zuschreibungen).]

Artist, Switzerland


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