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.
Artists' Colony Fraueninsel
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.
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.
The Cultural Support Association of Prien am Chiemsee, registered association, has made it its business to cultivate and support both the tradition of the old artist´ colonies and the contemporary artistic works in the artists´ scenery of Chiemsee. In its membership of euroArt, the Cultural Support Association Prien am Chiemsee, registered association, sees the chance and possibility of emphasizing the regional significance of the artists´ scenery of Chiemsee within the circle of the European artists´ colonies and contributing to a lively exchange of art and culture within Europe and with that to a better understanding of the European nations among themselves.