Interesting facts 

That’s how the Artists were inspired by the Reichenbach Valley

One of the most picturesque countryside of the Alps is situated between Meiringen and Grindelwald. The Rosenlaui area combines fascinating scenic contrasts. The Reichenbach river ripples smoothly through the high valley, passing lush meadows and mighty mountain forests. The roughly jagged Engelhorn mountain range, and the ice armoured summits of the Rosenhorn, the Mittelhorn, the Wellhorn and the Wetterhorn rise high above. From early on, this landscape full of contrasts attracted artists from afar. It  inspired to important master pieces of the mountain painting, pioneer works of the high mountain photography and entered into literature.

 

All these cultural testimonies have been made possible only by the fact that people have, over time, found an access to the mountain world guided by interest and curiosity. In earlier days this was different. The mountains were considered fearsome, even as a fatal threat, which could only be faced with great caution. This way of thinking can still be found today in old legends and in other expressive forms of folk culture.

This perception changed only in the 18th century. At the beginning of this new understanding of the mountain world was a poem – “The Alps”, written in 1729 by an academic from Bern, Albrecht von Haller, after a journey to the Swiss Alps. Gradually fear made way for fascination. Soon artists and poets also explored the Alps. Their works opened the eyes of a wider public for the attraction of the mountains.

The Rosenlaui area played a key role in the beginning of alpine tourism. With its specific mix of wild and mellow character the Reichenbach valley attracted Europe's most famous landscape artists, painters and engravers of 18th century. In the 19th century the valley was known as the epitome of romantic countryside. Those who visited the valley were not looking for sunshine and active repose, like today’s tourists, but for a spectacle of emotions. The adventure was perfect, when mist and clouds lay over the landscape: then the water in the Reichenbach valley could be experienced in all possible appearances – from the ice of the glacier and bubbling mountain streams to the dramatic rainy and misty haze.