Christoffer Wilhelm Eckersberg (1783-1853), The Cloisters of the Franciscan Monastery Santa Maria in Aracoeli in Rome, 1815
Framed motifs created by looking out or in through arches or colonnades appear frequently in 19th century painting.
In Rome the device comes naturally; the many ruins and colonnades in the city invite spectators to look through them. A frame provides structure and perspective, allowing you to organise the splendid, picturesque views.
Sense of perspective
The device is perfectly in keeping with Eckersberg’s sense of perspective. The arches insert an extra layer between spectator and background. As in a camera, the framing gives us the opportunity to control the chaos of detail in front of us.