Art:German Romantic Drawings, Tracing God's Fingerprint

A fascinating show brings German Romantic drawings to the fore

There was a time when right-thinking modernists hardly thought about the first half of the 19th century at all. For them, pretty well everything painted or sculpted between the French Revolution of 1789 and the Communist Manifesto of 1848 was the art from which modernism, as the phrase went, "freed itself" -- a dim if permanent background to the ongoing drama of the new.

Does anyone share this illusion of a radical break today? Not likely. Precisely because the 19th century (except for impressionism and its consequences) was once shunned, for the past 20 years it has been the curator's mother...

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