Emil Nolde - Rote Päonien (Sommerblumen)

Emil Nolde - Rote Päonien (Sommerblumen) - image-1
Emil Nolde - Rote Päonien (Sommerblumen) - image-1

Emil Nolde

Rote Päonien (Sommerblumen)
Circa 1925/1930

Watercolour on Japan paper 19,5 x 14.5 cm Framed under glass. Signed 'Nolde.' in black pen and ink upper right. - Very vibrant colours. Minimally browned to the upper margin.

In 1909 Emil Nolde would already note: “The colours of the flowers irresistibly drew me to them and - almost suddenly - I was painting. My first little garden paintings were created. The blooming colours of the flowers and the purity of these colours, I loved them. I loved the flowers in their fate: sprouting up, blooming, luminously glowing, sagging, withering, ending up tossed aside in the ditch.” (Emil Nolde, Jahre der Kämpfe, 2nd exp. ed., Flensburg 1958, p. 95).

Flowers provided Nolde with the courage to bring the luminous colours of the world into his paintings without constraint. When the artist writes about the spontaneous, fulfilling experience of blooming colours - while nonetheless immediately bringing up the topos of becoming and decline and thus, with a melancholy gravity, making them a symbol of the fate of humanity - this reveals above all the metaphysical as well as spiritual qualities which he saw inscribed within nature and flowers. In the mid-1920s it began to become clear to Nolde that he would soon be leaving Utenwarf for a variety of reasons; he and his wife Ada would move from there to Seebüll.

The peonies in our delicate watercolour present themselves to viewers in luxuriant grandeur, like a sea of colour. From their lush blooming to their gradual wilting to their decay, they embody a theatrical element that certainly must have intrigued the painter.


With a photo-certificate from Manfred Reuther, Klockries, dated 26 October 2018. The watercolour is registered in his archive under "Nolde A - 106/2018"


Stuttgarter Kunstkabinett Roman Norbert Ketterer, 34th auction Moderne Kunst 21/22 November 1959, lot 652; Private collection, South Germany

Lot 228 D

45.000 € - 55.000 €

57.040 €