As of May 15, 2024

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner

Lot 413
Kopf Dichter Leonhard Frank I, 1917
Woodcut

16.5 x 10.2 in (42.0 x 26.0 cm)

Lot 413
Kopf Dichter Leonhard Frank I, 1917
Woodcut
16.5 x 10.2 in (42.0 x 26.0 cm)

Estimate:
€ 18,000 - 24,000
Auction: 21 days

Ketterer Kunst GmbH & Co KG

City: Munich
Auction: Jun 08, 2024
Auction number: 554
Auction name: Modern Art Day Sale

Lot Details
Woodcut. Signed and inscribed "Eigendruck".Titled "Dichter Frank" on the reverse. One of only 6 known copies from this printing state and one of just seven known copies of this woodcut. On blotting paper. 42 x 26 cm. Sheet: 58,7 x 38,5 cm.
[CH].
- One of only 6 known copies from this state of printing, two of which are museum-owned: Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main and Buchheim Museum, Bernried. - The only copy of this important print portrait from the Davos period to date offered on the international auction market. - During Kirchner's very first stay on the Stafelalp (near Davos) in 1917, he produced 13 woodcuts, which rank among the highlights of Kirchner's oeuvre.
LITERATURE: Gustav Schiefler, Die Graphik Ernst Ludwig Kirchners, vol. 2 (1917-1927), Berlin-Charlottenburg 1931, no. H 305. Annemarie and Wolf-Dieter Dube, E. L. Kirchner. Das graphische Werk, Munich 1967, no. H 322 II (of II). Günther Gercken, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. Kritisches Werkverzeichnis der Druckgraphik, vol. 4 (1917-1919), Bern 2015, no. 877 II (of II, illu.). - - Leonhard-Frank-Gesellschaft (ed.), 20 Jahre Leonhard-Frank-Gesellschaft (institution series), no. 10, Würzburg 2002, p. 10 (illu., no. 3, p. 11). Frankenland. Zeitschrift für fränkische Landeskunde, August 2001, no. 4, pp. 267ff. (illu., no. 35). Hermann Gerlinger, Katja Schneider (eds.), Die Maler der Brücke. Inventory catalog Hermann Gerlinger Collection, Halle (Saale) 2005, p. 346, SHG no. 777 (illu.).
Kunstmuseum Moritzburg, Halle an der Saale (permanent loan from the Hermann Gerlinger Collection, 2001-2017). Buchheim Museum, Bernried (permanent loan from the Hermann Gerlinger Collection, 2017-2022)
Hermann Gerlinger Collection, Würzburg (with the collector's stamp Lugt 6032)
In 1917, E. L. Kirchner spent the summer months on the Stafelalp above Davos for the first time. After the mental strain of his time of service in the army, the artist tried to numb his weariness and anxiety with alcohol, drugs and cigarettes. During these months, he was mentally and physically so exhausted that he was unable to paint or work. After his friend, the patron and collector Henry van de Velde, had visited Kirchner in Davos, he was so dismayed and worried that he referred him to a doctor friend, the psychiatrist Dr. Ludwig Binswanger at the Bellevue Sanatorium in Kreuzlingen on Lake Constance. From September 1917, Kirchner stayed at Lake Constance, where his health improved significantly after just a few weeks. He seemed to have overcome the worst part of his illness and eagerly began to work again, devoting himself to drawings and paintings that show doctors, nurses, patients and visitors. It was at this time that Kirchner met the writer Leonhard Frank (1882-1961), who was known for, among other things, his novel "Die Räuberbande" (The Band of Robbers). Although he was not a patient at the sanatorium during these months, he continued to visit Dr. Binswanger whom he knew from previous stays, so that Kirchner could make several portraits of him on these occasions. A little earlier, Frank had published his work "Der Mensch ist gut", a collection of radically pacifist stories describing the horrors of war and making a loud and stirring plea for peace. Kirchner may have recognized a kindred spirit in Frank, a like-minded person who processed his emotions in the written word - while Kirchner sought to overcome his pain in his paintings and prints. He portrayed the writer in woodcuts, drawings and in an oil painting (Gordon 495). "Kopf Dichter Leonhard Frank I" was created at a very challenging time for the artist and contains the emotional intensity and expressiveness so characteristic of Kirchner's artistic work at the time. [CH]
In good condition. Edges slightly irregular in places as well as with faint isolated scuffed spots in places, with slight traces of rubbing. With smoothed creases, primarily in the lower margin, and with two small, dark paper enclosures. The image faintly rubbed in very few places.
Lot Details
Woodcut. Signed and inscribed "Eigendruck".Titled "Dichter Frank" on the reverse. One of only 6 known copies from this printing state and one of just seven known copies of this woodcut. On blotting paper. 42 x 26 cm. Sheet: 58,7 x 38,5 cm.
[CH].
- One of only 6 known copies from this state of printing, two of which are museum-owned: Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main and Buchheim Museum, Bernried. - The only copy of this important print portrait from the Davos period to date offered on the international auction market. - During Kirchner's very first stay on the Stafelalp (near Davos) in 1917, he produced 13 woodcuts, which rank among the highlights of Kirchner's oeuvre.
LITERATURE: Gustav Schiefler, Die Graphik Ernst Ludwig Kirchners, vol. 2 (1917-1927), Berlin-Charlottenburg 1931, no. H 305. Annemarie and Wolf-Dieter Dube, E. L. Kirchner. Das graphische Werk, Munich 1967, no. H 322 II (of II). Günther Gercken, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. Kritisches Werkverzeichnis der Druckgraphik, vol. 4 (1917-1919), Bern 2015, no. 877 II (of II, illu.). - - Leonhard-Frank-Gesellschaft (ed.), 20 Jahre Leonhard-Frank-Gesellschaft (institution series), no. 10, Würzburg 2002, p. 10 (illu., no. 3, p. 11). Frankenland. Zeitschrift für fränkische Landeskunde, August 2001, no. 4, pp. 267ff. (illu., no. 35). Hermann Gerlinger, Katja Schneider (eds.), Die Maler der Brücke. Inventory catalog Hermann Gerlinger Collection, Halle (Saale) 2005, p. 346, SHG no. 777 (illu.).
Kunstmuseum Moritzburg, Halle an der Saale (permanent loan from the Hermann Gerlinger Collection, 2001-2017). Buchheim Museum, Bernried (permanent loan from the Hermann Gerlinger Collection, 2017-2022)
Hermann Gerlinger Collection, Würzburg (with the collector's stamp Lugt 6032)
In 1917, E. L. Kirchner spent the summer months on the Stafelalp above Davos for the first time. After the mental strain of his time of service in the army, the artist tried to numb his weariness and anxiety with alcohol, drugs and cigarettes. During these months, he was mentally and physically so exhausted that he was unable to paint or work. After his friend, the patron and collector Henry van de Velde, had visited Kirchner in Davos, he was so dismayed and worried that he referred him to a doctor friend, the psychiatrist Dr. Ludwig Binswanger at the Bellevue Sanatorium in Kreuzlingen on Lake Constance. From September 1917, Kirchner stayed at Lake Constance, where his health improved significantly after just a few weeks. He seemed to have overcome the worst part of his illness and eagerly began to work again, devoting himself to drawings and paintings that show doctors, nurses, patients and visitors. It was at this time that Kirchner met the writer Leonhard Frank (1882-1961), who was known for, among other things, his novel "Die Räuberbande" (The Band of Robbers). Although he was not a patient at the sanatorium during these months, he continued to visit Dr. Binswanger whom he knew from previous stays, so that Kirchner could make several portraits of him on these occasions. A little earlier, Frank had published his work "Der Mensch ist gut", a collection of radically pacifist stories describing the horrors of war and making a loud and stirring plea for peace. Kirchner may have recognized a kindred spirit in Frank, a like-minded person who processed his emotions in the written word - while Kirchner sought to overcome his pain in his paintings and prints. He portrayed the writer in woodcuts, drawings and in an oil painting (Gordon 495). "Kopf Dichter Leonhard Frank I" was created at a very challenging time for the artist and contains the emotional intensity and expressiveness so characteristic of Kirchner's artistic work at the time. [CH]
In good condition. Edges slightly irregular in places as well as with faint isolated scuffed spots in places, with slight traces of rubbing. With smoothed creases, primarily in the lower margin, and with two small, dark paper enclosures. The image faintly rubbed in very few places.

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