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Lot 185: Gabriele Münter
Modern Art with Sideways of the German Avantgarde & Post War
December 5, 2007
Description: Gabriele Münter (1877 Berlin - 1962 Murnau). Drei Madonnen mit dunklen Blättern. 1933 Oil on cardboard. Signed lower left. Signed, dated and titled as well as with the work number on the reverse.40,5 x 32,6 cm (15,9 x 12,8 in). The work is recorded in Gabriele Münter's workbooks from 1933 as follows: 'Drei Madonnen mit dunklen Blättern P 6 F 57a/33 12.XI. vm. u. nm. (auf Vorkriegsstudie 1910 riesigen Männerkopf) (nach Vorkrieg Stilleben) (+ Burschenkopf 1910) an Lena Gierl geschenkt 30. XII. 1952'Expertise: This work is accompanied by a certificate of authenticity (in copy) from the Gabriele Münter- und Johannes Eichner-Stiftung, dated 21 March 2007. The work will be included in the forthcoming catalogue raisonné of paintings Provenienz: Gift from the artist to Lena Gierl, Murnau, on 30 December 1952 (with handwritten owner's notes on the reverse).Private ownership South Germany. Between 1901 and 1903 Gabriele Münter visited the private art school 'Phalanx' in München which was run by Wassily Kandinsky. Münter and Kandinsky began travelling together in 1904: to Holland, Italy, France - where they met Rousseau and Matisse - and elsewhere. She and Kandinsky lived together and often met with Klee, Marc, Macke, Jawlensky and Marianne von Werefkin since 1908. Münter became a member of the 'Neue Künstlervereinigung München' for two years in 1909 and joined the 'Blaue Reiter' in 1909. When war broke out, Münter and Kandinsky at first moved to Switzerland. Münter, however, decided a year later to go to Stockholm, where she separated from Kandinsky. She moved to Copenhagen in1917. She travelled a lot during the 1920s and spent some time in Munich, Murnau, Cologne and Berlin. Suffering from a creative block after her breach with Kandinsky, her painting did not renew until the 1930s. After 1931 she spent most of her time in Murnau and Munich. Gabriele Münter links up in this painting with subject matter she had worked out before the First World War. Starting with painting excursions she took with Kandinsky and Marianne von Werefkin in the Murnau hinterland, Münter fell in love with Bavarian vernacular art. She began to paint tinsel pictures and took over the formal structure of her local models in building up her compositions. Münter would remain faithful to this ordering principle in all her later work even though her interpretations of it varied, as in the present work. Firm contours have yielded to more painterly handling. The three Madonnas are engaging in a form of Sacra Conversatione, tied into a simple arrangement of pottery vases with autumnal foliage. Here Münter has emphasised the earthy and naïve quality of peasant art, which she secretly admired for its unpretentious way of making a statement. In 1956 she received the Culture Prize of the City of Munich. The year 1960 saw the first exhibition of Münter's work in the US, followed in 1961 by a large show in the the Mannheim Kunsthalle. Gabriele Münter died in her house at Murnau on 19 May 1962.[KD]In good condition, colours still fresh. Corners minimally rubbed or bumped due to the framing.