Friday, October 29, 2010

“I Dream With Open Eyes, And My Eyes See”

Moritz Daniel Oppenheim (1800-1882)
Portrait Of Heinrich Heine
Hamburg Kunsthalle

Oil On Paper On Canvas
17 3/8 Inches By 13 5/8 Inches


Moritz Oppenheim’s famous portrait of Heinrich Heine was painted in 1831, the year Heine was forced to leave Germany for France, where he lived in exile for the rest of his life.

If to the Germans Heine remained an outsider, to the French he remained a German. Never entirely comfortable in Paris living a life of banishment, Heine ached for his homeland.

Denk ich an Deutschland in der Nacht,
Dann bin ich um den Schlaf gebracht,
Ich kann nicht mehr die Augen schliessen,
Und meine heissen Traenen fliessen.

When I think of Germany by night,
My dreams turn into fright,
My eyes can no longer sleep,
As I break down and passionately weep.

Heinrich Heine (1797-1856)

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