Oberammergau, Germany

After lunch I went to check out a bakery with the best Baumkuchentorte in town.

Sadly, they were sold out by the time I got there. I ordered a walnut cake in its stead.

On my way back to the lodge, I came across this Honey-for-sale box.

I like the concept you can just open the box, drop the money in the deposit tin and take the honey!

After storing the cake at the lodge, I went for a walk around Oberammergau.

The town is small and is known for its colourful painted houses using a fresco painting technique called Lüftlmalerei – By applying water-based pigment over wet plaster, the colours (as they dry up) become integral part the wall, insoluble to water. The name “Lüftlmalerei” is thought to have derived from the house “Zum Lüftl” where the famous fresco painter Franz Seraph Zwinck once lived. The technique became popular in Upper Bavaria in the 18th century when local farmers, merchants or craftmen display their wealth through opulently painted facades. The motifs are usually biblical scenes, fairy tales or architectural trompe-l’œil.

The Pilatushaus (House of Pontius Pilate), dated 1784, is one of the main works of Franz Seraph Zwinck. The house got its name from the fresco denunciation of Jesus by Pontius Pilate, painted on its garden side.

Two façades of the Pilatushaus must be emphasised because of their symbolically valuable biblical scenes which are virtuously integrated into the real architecture of doors and windows. The effect is supported by the depiction of shadows, almost perfectly blending the trompe l’oeil with the real features of the building, in order to trick the observer. Source: Museum with No Frontiers

The south façade of the house, also known as the garden side, seems to have a round portico supported by columns above and before the entrance door. Two painted stairways lead up on both sides of the portico to pedestals on which human figures are displayed, which are commonly termed as pharisees. Between these pedestals, Pontius Pilate is sitting on a throne, where, at his feet, there is a kneeling Jesus Christ. It is assumed that the owner of the house took part in the local Passion play in the role of Pontius Pilatus, thus possibly giving the house its name. Typically Baroque architectural elements, along with floral and figural forms, frame the images. Source: Museum with No Frontiers]
The gable of the east side of the house shows a Resurrection scene in a shell-shaped niche between two windows. On the balcony one can find the fleeing keepers of the grave. The figure on the right is leaping over the balustrade in an alarmed, but slightly unnatural movement. The two lower zones of the façade are decorated exclusively with painted architectural elements and seem to be separated from the gable zone by a cornice. This side of the building is dominated by illusionist architectural painting of the balcony, the cornice, the window frames, diverse arrangements of columns, a coat-of-arms in a cartouche and other such ornamental elements. The clever use of perspective layering invokes an interpretation pointing towards Baroque theatre architecture. Source: [Museum with No Frontiers]

Woodcarving workshop can be observed daily at the Pilatushaus between May 15th and October 17th.

The other notable Lüftlmalerei houses in town are: Hansel & Gretel and Little Red Riding Hood. Both can be easily located across the street from one another on Ettaler Straße.

The church of St. Peters and St. Paul is of Rococo style.

All the statues are made of wood, stuccoed and gilded to make it look like marble or gold. Note the imposing WWI memorial at the entrace and the glass plaque nearby paying tribute to the victims of the WWII.

As I exited the church ground, the sun was setting, casting golden hues on the surrounding mountains.

I went back to the pub I dined earlier in day. Had a glass of Glühwein to warm up, a bowl of Bavarian lieberknödel (liver dumpling) in beef broth – it reminded me of a really good pho💕 – and a plateful of oven-fresh schweinbraten (roasted pork) with red cabbage and German potato dumplings.

For dessert, I had the walnut cake from the bakery, it was light and creamy, melt in the mouth.

Coming up next: Zugspitze – Top of Germany

10 thoughts on “Oberammergau, Germany

  1. Oh, most excellent! The first photo of the Pilate house is astonishing! I see that you found a great cake to substitute the one that was finished. Baumkuchen I had to google and now want some. In my family we often had liver dumplings in the soup and I was never a fan of anything liver.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I visited Oberammergau and the Lüftlmalerei were truly a delight! I’m a fan of distinctive architecture, and those in this small, German town certainly didn’t disappoint. The liver dumpling sounds absolutely rich and definitely something that I would try– glad you had a good time there!

    Liked by 1 person

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