Luxury Design, Past & Present
This painting radiates a great serenity and almost forces the beholder to pause. The gaze graces over a wide rising, following the way through the fields to a walled stair, resting onto a group of townswomen only to be drawn further into the picture to an enclosed garden. The way is framed by slender cypresses.
It is a humble motif that was captured on canvas by Ferdinand Brunner. The park-like elevation near Castel Gandolfo is located in the south of Rome. There, toping over the Albano lake, is the summer residence of the Roman popes and Brunner paid this place a visit during his Italy trip in 1896/97.
Almost accidently the painter opens this scene in front of us: the terrace-like terrain with a wide view of the Albano lake in the distance, the sky above it. The only spot of color is the group of women.
With the composition of this painting, the only 28 years old Brunner reveals his whole genius. The tall-grown cypresses in the left half of the painting form a contra point to the horizontal focused motif. In a true virtuous manner, Brunner catches simple details like the rocky underground which colors can be found again in the wall, or the inconspicuous wild flowers and the sandy path.
Alas it is the breaking cloud cover and the diffuse lighting in the sky that lend this painting an almost mystical aura and enforce the impression of a clarified serenity.