Carlo Mense - Pferdeschwemme

Carlo Mense - Pferdeschwemme - image-1
Carlo Mense - Pferdeschwemme - image-1

Carlo Mense


Reverse glass painting 55.5/55.8 x 44.8 cm Framed. Label of the gallery "Der Sturm", Herwarth Walden, Berlin, on the frame backing inscribed (handwritten) with artist's name and title. - Some minor losses of colour along the margins, resp. silverish colour change.

"The reverse glass painting 'Pferdeschwemme' (Horse Pond) depicts a group of naked people and horses, composed in a triangle, bathing in a river. On the horizon, industrial buildings and chimneys stretch along the opposite bank in a sort of a swaying round dance - metaphors of the modern industrial era typical for the Rhine valley region between Düsseldorf and Cologne at the beginning of the 20th century. [...]
The rich intensity and high-contrast colouring as well as the crystalline structure of overstretched, curved shapes refer not only to the influences of avant-garde art trends. They are also reminiscent of the medieval glass painting from the Rhineland which, in the course of the return to the origins and traditions of art by young artists, was revalued at the beginning of the century.
Carlo Mense was steered towards the medium of reverse glass painting by the artists of the 'Blauer Reiter' who had revived this folkloric painting technique with a long-standing tradition. The horseman and horse motifs, with their transcendent significance, also have their origin in the 'Blauer Reiter'. Around 1913/14, Mense repeatedly used them together with bathers and the river scenery of the Rhineland in order to symbolise an unspoilt world close to nature and an intense vital energy." (Klara Drenker-Nagels, in: Exhib. cat. Internationale Sprachen der Kunst, loc.cit., p. 165 f.)

Catalogue Raisonné

Drenker-Nagels 242 (without illus., there still erroneously dated "1919", "Whereabouts unknown")


We would like to thank Klara Drenker-Nagels for her kind additional and confirmatory information.


Herwarth Walden collection, Berlin; private collection; Sotheby's New York, Arcade Auctions. Impressionist, Modern and Contemporary Paintings, Drawings and Sculptures, 19 October 1995, lot 117; Hoh collection, Fürth; Christie's London, Impressionist and Modern Art Day Sale, 25 June 2008, lot 430 with inverted illus.; Private collection, Rhineland


Carlo Mense. Der Fluss des Lebens, ed. by Verein August Macke Haus e.V., Bonn 2000, colour illus. p. 72


Berlin Sept.- Dec. 1913 (Galerie Der Sturm), Erster Deutscher Herbstsalon, cat. no. 283, p. 25 (no illus.); Berlin March 1919 (Galerie Der Sturm), Sammlung Walden. Gemälde, Zeichnungen, Plastiken, cat. no. 262, p. 12 (no illus.); Altenburg/Osnabrück/Dortmund/Nuremberg 1998-2000 (Lindenau-Museum/Kulturgeschichtliches Museum Felix-Nussbaum-Haus/ Museum am Ostwall/Germanisches Nationalmuseum), Internationale Sprachen der Kunst. Gemälde, Zeichnungen und Skulpturen der Klassischen Moderne aus der Sammlung Hoh, cat. no. 61, with colour illus. p. 167

Lot 308 R

50.000 € - 55.000 €

61.000 €