Hofsgrund on Schauinsland Mountain, 1939
About the object
Known today as a haven for hikers and winter sports enthusiasts, the modern-day district of Oberried Hofsgrund only comprised a chapel and a few isolated farms at the time the painting was made. The elevated viewpoint from the Schauinsland affords a vast panoramic view over the village towards the Feldberg.
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From an elevated vantage point, the viewer looks down on the village of Hofsgrund on Schauinsland Mountain near Freiburg. This perspective enables Julius Heffner to present a striking panorama with the peak of the Feldberg towering in the background. In addition, the artist uses contrasts to create an authentic impression of nature, even if his choice of color seems a little too luminous. He skillfully combines close-up and distant views: at first, the stony path in the foreground lies in shadow, then leads through bright sunlight to the village. Small gnarled trees frame the picture to the right and left, while blue and white dots in the dark grass suggest flowers. Fences of interlocking wooden slats trace the undulating hills of the Schauinsland; they are typical of the region and can be constructed without additional material, making them a simple and inexpensive option for protection against cows and goats. At the time this painting was made, Hofsgrund consisted of a small chapel and a few farmhouses. They stand isolated in the brilliant green landscape of meadow and hills, conspicuous with their light-colored roofs. Today, Hofsgrund is part of the town of Oberried and numbers around 580 inhabitants; it is also a popular destination for hikers and tourists. Above all, the town attracts numerous winter sports enthusiasts due to its elevation of 1032 to 1056 meters. MIRJA STRAUB (Transl. MELISSA THORSON)