Emil Nolde - Sonnenblume und gelbe Dahlienblüte

Emil Nolde - Sonnenblume und gelbe Dahlienblüte - image-1
Emil Nolde - Sonnenblume und gelbe Dahlienblüte - image-1

Emil Nolde

Sonnenblume und gelbe Dahlienblüte
Circa 1930/1935

Watercolour on thin Japan laid paper 35.4 x 46.9 cm Framed under glass. Signed 'Nolde.' in dark ink pen lower right. - In fine condition; the upper left corner slightly thinned out.

In the light-filled watercolour presented here, Emil Nolde captures the late-summer colours of his garden. The luminous yellow and the orange of the sunflower and dahlia dominate the composition and are set forth in the pistils of the white flowers on the right. Cool and subdued contrasts are established through the blue flower that stretches down on the left and the background done in light grey and violet. The leafy twig and the suggested foliage provide for vibrant accents and anchor the seemingly floating blooms in the foreground.

Nolde's chromatically intense watercolours have very little in common with the traditional subject of the floral piece. He is concerned neither with the depiction of a pleasant domestic arrangement nor with the possibility of the flowers' botanical identification. He considers their colours worthy of depiction in themselves and realises them in balanced compositions based on their natural surroundings. In doing so, he uses rapid and fluid brushstrokes to compose his motifs purely on the basis of colour, and he puts the material characteristics of watercolour paints and paper to work for him - thus, for example, the white flowers on the right become represented as a negative form, so to speak, through the unpainted whiteness of the paper.


With a photo-certificate from Manfred Reuther, Klockries, dated 11 September 2018; the work is recorded in his archive under "Nolde A-97/2018".


Private collection, Rhineland; Lempertz auction 488, Kunst des 20. Jahrhunderts, 15 June 1966, lot 504 („Sonnenblumen“), with illus. plate 3; Galerie Nierendorf, Berlin; Private collection, West Germany, in family possession since

Lot 231 D

120.000 € - 140.000 €

173.600 €