The Artists´ Scenery of Chiemsee
In the summer of 1828 several cheerful students from the Bavarian royal seat of Munich discovered the picturesquely situated island Frauenchiemsee. Among Munich´s artists, they gave an account of their experiences on and by the lake so that in the following years a small band of artists from Munich looked for accommodation in the inn on the island Frauenchiemsee at the time of the summer months and cultivated the outdoor painting.
After the secularization of 1803 combined with the dissolving of the cloisters on the island Frauenchiemsee and the adjoining island Herreninsel had caused a paralysis of the social life, the locals were thoroughly delighted at the new arrivals who put some life into them, provided entertainment and brought pleasure on the island again.
One of the first German and probably one of the oldest European artists´ colonies has come into being. In the course of the years, new artists´ communities -so-called filiations-set up on the Chiemsee islands and around the lake, thus in Übersee, Gstad and Prien, inspired by the artists on the island Frauenchiemsee. This “Artists´ scenery of Chiemsee” with a vivid life for art has continued to this day.
As far back as in August 1945 the first German art exhibition after the Second World War took place in Prien. In the annual summer exhibitions, each time up to 70 painters and sculptors show a cross-section of the contemporary regional art under the motto “Art in Chiemgau” in the gallery of the Old Town Hall of Prien.
Prien at lake Chiemsee
The landscape around the lake Chiemsee inspired many artists to "plein air" studies. In 1800 the "discovery" of the lake Chiemsee began. Johann Georg von Dillis, was the first who drew the lake with its islands. In 1828, the artists' colony was founded by Maximilian Haushofer and Christian Ruben. At the end of the 19th Century the Chiemsee became famous due to the numerous reproductions of the "kings of painter" Karl Raupp and Joseph Wopfner. From 1855 until 1909 a group of artists and intellectuals called "Bären und Löwen" met during summer in Prien. In this time the artists themselves began to settle at the lake.
Gallery in the old town hall
This is one of the most important cultural facilities of the Chiemgau region. The gallery is located in the old town hall and was opened in 1985. Today it is still an artists' meeting point. Until today some 100 exhibits were shown. The market town Prien started collecting art in 1913. This is why there is a rich collection of paintings and sculptors. Contemporary art is shown each year in July and August during the "Kunst im Chiemgau" exhibition. www.galerie-prien.de
The Benedictine abbey Frauenwörth was founded 782. Inspired by the landscape and beauty the artists' colony was found on the island in the year 1828 by painters including Max Haushofer, Franz Trautmann and the brothers Boshart.
Chiemsee Fraueninsel is an absolute little gem of peace and tranquillity. The convent which was founded in the 8th century is still occupied by Benedictine nuns today. The romantic fishing village on the island and the wide variety of places to eat draw many visitors all year round. After a gentle stroll around the island’s idyllic fishing village a glass or two in one of the beer gardens is a tempting prospect. Chiemsee Schifffahrt runs boat trips to the islands all year round from Prien. The minster on the Fraueninsel has at its centre a triple-nave Romanesque basilica which over the years has undergone considerable alterations particularly to the interior. The so-called Campanile – a solid free-standing bell tower is seen as being a landmark of Chiemgau. www.frauenwoerth.de
Chiemgau’s most famous attraction – the Herrenchiemsee Palace - is located on the Herren island. The palace was built by King Ludwig II. of Bavaria between 1878 and 1885 in the style of the palace at Versailles. It was however left unfinished. The surrounding parklands contain both gardens and fountains with the highlight being the system of fountains comprising the Latona, Fama and Fortuna fountains. Tours of the Herrenchiemsee Palace, the King Ludwig II. museum are available all year round, as are tours of the museum in the former Augustinian monastery where in 1948 the constitutional assembly for the establishing of the Grundgesetz (constitution) of the Federal Republic of Germany was held.
The Gallery "Maler am Chiemsee" shows a selection of masterpieces of work from the Chiemsee painters which were created from 1790 until World War II. www.herren-chiemsee.de