Oskar Schlemmer (1888-1943)
Oskar Schlemmer (1888-1943)

Geneigte Halbfigur mit rötlichen Tönen

Oskar Schlemmer (1888-1943)
Geneigte Halbfigur mit rötlichen Tönen
dated '30.1.33' (lower right)
pastel on paper
21 ½ x 16 ¼ in. (54.8 x 41.4 cm.)
Executed on 30 January 1933
Marlborough Fine Art, Ltd., London, by whom acquired in 1960.
Galerie Roman Norbert Ketterer, Campione d'Italia, by whom acquired from the above in 1966.
Maria Tannenbaum, New York.
Findlay Gallery, New York.
Galerie Zwirner, Cologne, 1969-1971.
Galerie Neuendorf, Hamburg.
Private collection, Germany, by whom acquired from the above, and thence by descent.
H. Hildebrandt, Oskar Schlemmer, Munich, 1952, no. 822.
R.N. Ketterer, Moderne Kunst III, Campione d'Italia, 1966, no. 171 (illustrated p. 189).
K. von Maur, Oskar Schlemmer: Oeuvrekatalog der Gemälde, Aquarelle, Pastelle und Plastiken, Munich, 1979, no. K55, pp. 359-360 (illustrated p. 360).
Hannover, Kestner-Gesellschaft, Oskar Schlemmer: Handzeichnungen, Aquarelle, February - March 1960, no. 149; this exhibition later travelled to ten further locations in Germany between April 1960 and August 1961.
London, Marlborough Fine Art, Ltd., Painters of the Bauhaus, March - April 1962, no. 186, p. 82 (illustrated).
London, Marlborough Fine Art, Ltd., Drawings, Watercolours, Collages, Expressionism, Bauhaus, Dada, January 1966, no. 59 (illustrated).

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Annie Wallington
Annie Wallington

Lot Essay

Oskar Schlemmer was among the first and most prominent masters at the Staatliches Bauhaus, first in Weimar and later in Dessau, where he developed a truly unique, instantly recognisable style in his art. Dating from 30 January 1933, the present work, expressive and introspective at once, was executed just two weeks after the Swiss artist Otto Meyer-Amden passed away. Schlemmer and Meyer-Amden first met in 1911 and became very close friends. They corresponded regularly and shared a deep mutual understanding, so Schlemmer was naturally distressed after hearing the news of his friend’s passing. Just a few days before executing Geneigte Halbfigur mit rötlichen Tönen, he wrote to his fellow artist Lily Hildebrandt: ‘Otto Meyer is dead! The thought makes the mind go blank. A tragic life!’ (Letter from Oskar Schlemmer to Lily Hildebrandt, 26 January 1933, reproduced in T. Schlemmer, The Letters and Diaries of Oskar Schlemmer, trans. K. Winston, Evanston, Illinois, p. 306). Looking down, the sitter emanates a sense of sadness and introspection, heightened by the placement of her left hand on her heart. The rapidly drawn strokes of light-blue pastel are in stark contrast with the balanced composition and the geometry of the background, conveying some of the tension the artist may have been experiencing at the time.

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