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Grne Frauen (Roethel 57)

WASSILY KANDINSKY (1866-1944) Grne Frauen (Roethel 57) linocut in colors, 1907, on Japan, a fine, richly inked impression of this extremely rare print, signed in pencil, with narrow margins, tipped down to a black wove paper support sheet (as issued), pale foxing, the support sheet with light-staining and trimmed margins, otherwise in very good condition, framed L. 4 x 9.3/8 in. (120 x 238 mm.)
Sale Room Notice
Please note that this lot has been exhibited, according to labels on the reverse of the frame:

St. Petersburg Salon, 1908-9, no. 169
Berlin, Kunstausstellung Der Sturm, 1913-16 (original title Verfolgung altered to Grune Damen)

Lot Essay

This early work from Kandinsky's body of graphic work encapsules the artist's main principles, on the small scale he often favored at the time, and in a medium that conveyed them best. Abstraction of form, perspective and depth, and expression of mood through color come to full maturity in Grne Frauen; these ideas receive further development in the landmark folios Klnge and Kleine Welten of subsequent decades (see lots 351 and 352).

The mysterious subject of this linocut is unknown, but is made slightly clearer with the understanding that Kandinsky, throughout the works of this period, included medieval subjects and images that came to him in dreams. The human forms advance and recede in the repeated patterns and abstractions and are balanced by the calming horizontal format and harmonious palette. Kandinsky, speaking of his early works and their often ethereal nature, said that "the contents, the inner meaning must be felt."


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