Skip to main content
Past exhibition

22 June – 18 September 2011

Admission free
Location: Sunley Room

This landmark exhibition will display what is arguably one of the most complete collections of 19th-century Norwegian and Swiss landscape paintings outside their respective nations.

The exhibition introduces a British audience, familiar with great artists of the tradition of Constable and Turner, to skilled and innovative practitioners of landscape who enjoyed great reputations elsewhere in Europe.

About the exhibition

The 45 works displayed demonstrate the similarities of the Norwegian and Swiss traditions, but also the differences that climate, character, national temperament and political regimes impose on art.

Norway was engaged in a long struggle for freedom from Sweden and was poor, isolated and dependent for survival on its natural resources. Switzerland had been proudly independent for centuries and was prosperous, cosmopolitan and an early centre of industry.

How, the exhibition asks, are these realities implicated in their respective painting traditions?

Works on display

The exhibition includes works by Johan Christian Dahl, who, in a sense, invented Norwegian landscape painting, along with work by his student Thomas Fearnley. It also features work by Alexandre Calame, the father of the Swiss tradition. It aims to expand our understanding of the vital role national landscape painting played in European culture 150 years ago.

About the Lunde Collection

Asbjørn Lunde, an American of Norwegian extraction, has spent some 40 years as a distinguished art collector in several fields. Nowhere else can Norwegian and Swiss landscape painting be compared so directly and in such depth as in his collection.

The Sunley Room Exhibitions Programme is generously supported by The Bernard Sunley Charitable Foundation