Emil Nolde - See mit zwei blauen Booten vor Berglandschaft
See mit zwei blauen Booten vor Berglandschaft
Watercolour and brush and India ink on Japan laid paper 34.5 x 45 cm Framed under glass. Signed 'Nolde.' in black lower right. - In very fine condition.
The watercolours in which Emil Nolde captures alpine landscapes in darkly glowing tones are not nearly as well-known as his flower still lifes and views of the sea and marshes. The painter was fascinated by the mountains, where unspoilt nature manifested itself so differently than in his native northern Germany, where it was defined by the sea and wind. As a young man he had climbed the Matterhorn and other challenging peaks during the period he spent in St Gallen. In the 1920s and 1930s he went on a number of journeys to Switzerland, which was also the destination of his honeymoon with his second wife, Jolanthe, in 1946.
The watercolour here unites the world of the mountains with water to form an enchanting natural spectacle. Deep blue, green and violet merge in the twilight scenery of an alpine lake. The fishermen gather in their nets before the majestic setting of the mountains in the last light of evening. Like the fishing boats, the silhouettes of the promontories and ridges have been painted with broad black contours; the greenish blue of the water's surface takes up the entire lower half of the depicted space and reflects the violet nuances of the sky.
“For him, the preferred time of day to paint watercolours in the mountains was obviously from late afternoon to the 'blue hour', the period of twilight. […] Among Nolde's watercolours of the mountains, there are a few such works full of poetry and pensiveness. Whether it was the tranquillity of life in the alpine world, a relaxed holiday atmosphere or the uniqueness of this natural landscape that was responsible for this, there are few groups of motifs in Nolde's watercolour paintings that maintained such a constantly high level artistically.” (Andreas Fluck, in: Emil Nolde: Reiselust, exhib. cat. Berlin 2010, p. 21).
With a photo-certificate from Manfred Reuther, Klockries, dated 14 March 2018; the work is recorded in his archive under "Nolde A-76/2018".
Elsa Koppel (Bochum), acquired from the artist, before 1932; Private collection, Washington D.C., USA; Private collection, Massachusetts, USA; Private collection, Baden-Wuerttemberg