To see landscape thus, as something distant and foreign, something remote and unloving, something entirely self-contained, was necessary, if it was ever to be a medium and an occasion for an autonomous art; for it had to be distant and very different from us, if it was to be capable of becoming a redemptive symbol for our fate. It had to be almost hostile in its indifference, if it was to give a new meaning to our existence… For we began to understand Nature only when we no longer understood it; when we felt that it was the Other, indifferent towards men, which has no wish to let us enter, then for the first time we stepped outside of Nature, alone, out of the lonely world.

Rainer Maria Rilke, “Concerning Landscape”, in Stephen Mitchell, introduction to The Selected Poems of Rainer Maria Rilke