Bodenseelandschaft mit Schloss Montfort
Oil on canvas 65.5 x 81.3 cm Framed. Signed 'Purrmann' in dark brown lower right. - Verso on stretcher with various handwritten inscriptions and numerations and with an old numbered label.
The archive of the artist's estate has long been aware of this large landscape painting of Lake Constance viewed from Langenargen; however, it is only now that, after many years in a private collection, the work has become known to the public. A very similar, though smaller (25 × 35 cm) version repeats the motif, perspective and colour composition in a comparable way (Lenz/Billeter 1927/11). That version belonged to the painter Willy Schlobach, who lived next to Lake Constance in his final years.
The Lake Constance landscapes and the garden perspectives of the Purrmann house - which had come to serve the artist as a retreat following 1918 and the artist's stay in France - remained classic themes in the twenties and also in later years. In the present painting, the viewer's gaze thus passes across the lawn and its old trees to the banks of the lake and on to the island of Schloss Montfort. This landscape profile and this view of the lake are among the thematic constants in his work. The noticeable transparency of the paint and the linearity of its application to the canvas - in some cases in parallel rhythmic structures - are very typical of the artist's development in these years: “The thickly applied paint in spots [...] is now replaced by a thin, transparent quality of paint, which allows the light tone of the ground to weave its way into the image. This coincides with a new significance of linearity - in a double sense. On the one hand, the paint is now applied in elongated strokes and is thus filled with the energy of the line, with tension and dynamism. On the other hand, there now appear contour lines that possess an inherent value. [...] From the twenties on, he often permits colouristic and linear elements to interweave in his paintings.” (Lorenz Dittmann, 'Hans Purrmanns farbige Bildgestaltung', in: exhib. cat. Hans Purrmann, Im Raum der Farbe, Historisches Museum der Pfalz, Speyer, 1996, pp. 38f.).
Alfred Flechtheim presented a solo exhibition of Hans Purrmann's work in Berlin in 1927 ('Hans Purrmann: Neue Gemälde' [new paintings], cf. Christian Lenz/Felix Billeter, Hans Purrmann: Die Gemälde, vol. 2 [Munich, 2003], p. 375). It was from Flechtheim that the previous owner, a Purrmann collector and a good friend of the artist, purchased this painting.
Galerie Flechtheim; formerly Collection Consul H. Bomke, Dortmund, 1927 acquired from Alfred Flechtheim (receipt and correspondance existing in copy)