Max Pechstein (1881-1955)
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Max Pechstein (1881-1955)

Das rote Teeservice

Max Pechstein (1881-1955)
Das rote Teeservice
signed with the initials and dated 'HMP 1916' (upper right)
oil on canvas
31¾ x 27¾ in. (80.6 x 70.5 cm.)
Painted in 1916
Dalzell Hatfield Galleries, Los Angeles, by 1959.
Acquired from the above by the family of the present owners in 1961, and thence by descent.
Leipzig, Kunstverein, Max Pechstein: 22 Gemälde, 1916, no. 22.
Los Angeles, Dalzell Hatfield Galleries, Max Pechstein: First West Coast Exhibition, March 1959.
New York, Van Diemen - Lilienfeld Galleries, Max Pechstien, May - June 1959.
Special notice
VAT rate of 5% is payable on hammer price and at 15% on the buyer's premium
Sale room notice
Please note Dr. Aya Soika has confirmed the authenticity of this painting and it is to be included in the forthcoming catalogue raisonné of Pechstein's oil paintings.

Please note the additional provenance and exhibition history below:
Dr. Karl Lilienfeld, acquired in 1916, by whom shipped to New York in 1932.

Leipzig, Kunstverein (on loan, 1924-1932).

Lot Essay

Das rote Teeservice was painted around the time of Pechstein's return to Germany from his extensive travels in Asia, Indonesia, Micronesia and the United States. Displaying the domestic setting of a table seemingly laid out for tea but in fact artificially arranged solely for the purpose of the picture, this vibrant and colourful still life reflects the influence of Pechstein's wanderings in its forceful and celebratory concentration of colour.

Seeming to combine the precedents set by both Cézanne and Matisse in the field of still-life painting, Pechstein, in this work, has arranged the work almost solely in accordance with its colour contrasts, placing an oval blue table-cloth at the centre of a predominantly red composition. With an assortment of rich colourful fruit laid out across the undulating folds of the table cloth as if they were vibrant features in an exotic landscape, the artist imbues this otherwise unremarkable scene with an intensity and sense of the exotic that is perhaps reflective of the unique time in which it was made.

The Germany to which Pechstein returned after his exciting journeys amongst the islands of the South Seas was embroiled in a war which by this time had begun to stagnate. His homeland was blockaded by the Allied Navy and was beginning to suffer shortages. In its concentration on the sumptuous and exotic colours and forms of this still life, Pechstein appears to be revelling in the richness of this display, emphasising its sumptuousness and at the same time celebrating its warm domestic familiarity.

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