Emil Nolde (1867-1956)
Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's… Read more PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE GERMAN COLLECTION
Emil Nolde (1867-1956)

Frischer Tag am Meere

Emil Nolde (1867-1956)
Frischer Tag am Meere
signed and dated 'E NOLDE 1906' (lower right); signed again and titled 'Emil Nolde. Frischer Tag am Meere' (on the stretcher)
oil on canvas
25½ x 32 7/8 in. (64.7 x 83.5 cm.)
Painted in 1906
Carl Hagemann, Leverkusen, by 1912.
Fraulein Anni Dinkgraeve, Aurich, a gift from the above in 1940, and thence by descent to the present owner.
The artist's handlist, 1907, no. 79.
The artist's handlist, January 1910, no. 97.
The artist's handlist, March 1910, no. 97.
The artist's handlist, December 1910, no. 99.
Letter from the artist to Carl Hagemann, 21 January 1912.
Letter from the artist to Carl Hagemann, 6 February 1912.
The artist's handlist, 1930 (as '1906 Frischer Tag am Meere').
M. Urban, Emil Nolde, Catalogue Raisonné of the Oil Paintings, vol. I, 1895-1914, London, 1987, no. 184, p. 178 (illustrated).
Hagen, Museum Folkwang, Emil Nolde, March 1907.
Münster, Westfälischer Kunstverein, Tendenzen zeitgenössischen Malerei in Deutschland, 1908, no. 210.
Dresden, Galerie Arnold, Die neue Malerei (Expressionistische Ausstellung), 1914, no. 122.
Dresden, Städtisches Kunstausstellungsgebäude & Galerie Neue Kunst Fides, Emil Nolde - Jubiläums Ausstellung zum 60. Geburtstag (Jubilee Exhibition), February - March 1927, no. 14 (catalogue edition A) & no. 7 (catalogue edition B); this exhibition later travelled to Hamburg, Kunstverein, April 1927; Kiel, Kunsthalle, May - June 1927; Essen, Museum Folkwang, July - September 1927; and Wiesbaden, Nassauischer Kunstverein, September - October 1927.
Frankfurt, Kunstverein, Emil Nolde, January 1928.
Hamburg, Kunstverein, Emil Nolde, August - September 1947.
Lübeck, Overback-Gesellschaft, Emil Nolde, October - November 1947, no. 7.
Special notice
Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's Resale Right Regulations 2006 apply to this lot, the buyer agrees to pay us an amount equal to the resale royalty provided for in those Regulations, and we undertake to the buyer to pay such amount to the artist's collection agent.

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Adrienne Dumas
Adrienne Dumas

Lot Essay

Painted on the island of Alsen in 1906, Frischer Tag am Meere is a rich and radiant seascape dating from the time of Emil Nolde's involvement with the Brücke group in Dresden. In January of 1906 Nolde had held an exhibition of his paintings at the Kunstsalon Ernst Arnold in Dresden where his work had had a revelatory effect on the Brücke artists, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Erich Heckel and Karl Schmidt-Rotluff who had seen it there.

Nolde's deep understanding of Van Gogh and the way in which heightened and even non-naturalistic colour could be used to effect an intensified and emotional response to nature and landscape, in particular, had a powerful impact on the Brücke artists when they saw Nolde's paintings, and led immediately to an invitation to join their group. In February, the normally reclusive Nolde uncharacteristically accepted their invitation and throughout 1906 became an active participant in the Brücke's collective enterprise.

With its impulsive brushstokes of radiant colour shimmering over the entire surface of the work and universally uniting sky, sea and shoreline, Frischer Tag am Meere is a powerful example of Nolde's intensified vision of landscape as a kind of natural mirror of the artist's soul. For Nolde, the landscape of his beloved Heimat or homeland in Schleswig-Holstein on the Danish border between the Baltic and North Seas, was a timeless source of both pictorial and spiritual wonder and the single most enduring and determining factor of the pattern of his life and art.

Born Emil Hansen, Nolde had taken his name from the village where he grew up, and his sense of identity as both a man and as an artist was rooted in the landscape of his native soil. It was this simple spiritual sense of communion with nature and of self-identification with it that much of his art, especially during this formative period, sought to express.

In the summer of 1903 Nolde had moved, with his wife Ada, to the small nearby island of Alsen, where they were to live for much of the next ten years. 'Scenically, we lived with the sea and the calm clouds above it, with the playful sun in the woods and in the garden' Nolde remembered, 'the occurrences taking place around us were small, our life was deeply intimate and precious, our house was small, but everything was profoundly experienced and the will of wants were proud' (Emil Nolde, Jahre der Kämpfe, Cologne, 1978, pp. 42-43).

Frischer Tag am Meere is a work that depicts the kind of scene that greeted Nolde everyday as he looked out over the shoreline from his small studio not far from the cottage that he and Ada shared on Alsen. As he recalled in his autobiography, 'We found a very small uninhabited house on one of our walks located on the edge of a wood and not far from the sea. It was a fisherman's house because brown tarred fish traps hung outside on a wall there. We soon found the bearded fisherman and the annual rent we had to pay was 50 Marks. It was good that it cost so little because our last funds melted away building a shack at the seaside that was to be my studio. My small studio: oh how happy I was! Through the window one's eyes floated freely over the sea outside and there was nothing to be seen save the water, the clouds and a bright day rising over the narrow strips of land of the Danish Islands' (Emil Nolde, ibid., p. 28).

In Frischer Tag am Meere Nolde has created a scene that reflects the same holistic sense of Nature underpinning an invisible and indivisible union of land, sea and sky as that he described witnessing everyday through his studio window. Drenched in a bright Nordic light that appears to dance and reflect off every surface, in this work sky, clouds, sea, boats and shoreline are all defined using the same flickering brushstrokes and complete spectrum of rich and at times dazzling colour. Clearly responding emotionally to the scene before him, Nolde has intuitively built the composition by layering the canvas with quick impulsive brushstrokes, one on top of the other until collectively they combine to form a rich swirling and animated surface that teems with its own painterly sense of life. In this way, Nolde has expanded all that he had learnt from Van Gogh's painting and extended it to the point where the abstract nature of his brushstrokes now take on an apparent meaning of their own. At the same time, the artist's evident delight in their rich colour and fluid flowing form bestows his seemingly innocuous subject matter with an intense and almost pantheistic degree of wonder and veneration.

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