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A successful symphony of art and nature

Karl Friedrich Schinkel and Peter Joseph Lenné developed a remarkably congenial partnership, each complementing the other and both spurring each other on to develop a philosophical and aesthetic concept of beautification. They created a subtle but ingenious choreography of nature, art and architecture. Lenné, the son of a long-established family of gardeners from Bonn, worked for four different rulers over five decades. He transformed the landscape between Berlin and Potsdam into a magnificent area of parkland, improved Berlin's Tiergarten park and built the Landwehr canal. He died in Potsdam in 1866, aged 77 and highly acclaimed. He is buried in a plain grave in the city's Bornstedt cemetery. Karl Friedrich Schinkel was born in Neuruppin in 1781. He was an architect, painter and city planner, and was instrumental in the rise of neo-classicism in Prussia. His clarity of style adhered to the renouncement of the over-elaborate baroque as prescribed by the Prussian Enlightenment. His most famous buildings are located in and around Berlin. The enormous body of work he had built up before his death in 1841 went on to influence whole generations of architects until the arrival of Bauhaus.
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Glienicke Palace & Park, Berlin-Zehlendorf

When Prince Carl of Prussia, son of King Friedrich Wilhelm III, bought the Glienicke estate on the south-western outskirts of Berlin in 1824, he immediately envisaged an Italianate idyll. The terrain in question was beautiful countryside, set on the banks of the river Havel where it broadened out into a lake. For his project he commissioned the celebrated Prussian architect Karl Friedrich Schinkel and the then unknown landscape gardener Peter Joseph Lenné. Glienicke was their first joint masterpiece, a compact tribute to Antiquity of the highest quality. Schinkel converted the former manor house into a neo-classical villa, with pergolas, stairways and intimate garden courtyards. Arcades, antique reliefs and a tower perfected the illusion of a mediterranean country estate. Following the English style, Lenné divided the area into a flower garden near the house and a “pleasure ground”. Schinkel, followed later by his pupil Ludwig Persius, placed a number of attractive buildings in this evocative scenery.
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  1. Glienicke Palace & Park, Berlin-Zehlendorf