Painted in 1912, Berglandschaft mit Häusern is a vibrant depiction of the landscape surrounding Oberstdorf, a picturesque Bavarian village dating from the summer Jawlensky spent working in the company of fellow artist Marianne Werefkin. Oberstdorf, a small town located in the Allgau region, was easily reachable by railway and its surrounding moor, with its view of the Bavarian Alps, provided a compelling visual environment for the artists. It was during this period that Jawlensky developed the bold technique for capturing the landscape in luminous, intense swathes of pure color that is so evident in Berglandschaft mit Häusern.
Jawlensky consistently described painting as a "search" and did not want to paint what he saw, but what he felt. Although he would go out to observe and paint the surrounding landscapes of Oberstdorf en plein air, he was more concerned with reaching from within, to express his experience rather than recording what he had seen. He would never completely abandon elements of naturalism, always retaining at least a reference to physical reality, yet his work hovers halfway between figuration and abstraction. Berglandschaft mit Häusern transforms the cool, crisp Autumn evening light into a sumptuous and harmonious conglomeration of color and form to articulate the atmosphere and emotion of an inner response to the landscape. By interpreting the landscape in this way, Jawlensky rejects the idea of an objective reality in an attempt to transcend the everyday appearance of things and to evoke a sense of an innate spiritual dimension that he believed holds the world of outer appearance together.