Renée Sintenis - Portrait Dr. h.c. G. (Gottlieb) F. (Friedrich) Reber - image-1
Renée Sintenis - Portrait Dr. h.c. G. (Gottlieb) F. (Friedrich) Reber - image-2
Renée Sintenis - Portrait Dr. h.c. G. (Gottlieb) F. (Friedrich) Reber - image-3
Renée Sintenis - Portrait Dr. h.c. G. (Gottlieb) F. (Friedrich) Reber - image-1Renée Sintenis - Portrait Dr. h.c. G. (Gottlieb) F. (Friedrich) Reber - image-2Renée Sintenis - Portrait Dr. h.c. G. (Gottlieb) F. (Friedrich) Reber - image-3

Lot 422 D

Renée Sintenis - Portrait Dr. h.c. G. (Gottlieb) F. (Friedrich) Reber

Auction 1043 - overview Cologne
28.11.2014, 18:00 - Modern Art
Estimate: 8.000 € - 12.000 €
Result: 9.300 € (incl. premium)

Renée Sintenis

Portrait Dr. h.c. G. (Gottlieb) F. (Friedrich) Reber

Plaster sculpture, on a square black wooden base (9.2 x 19 x 19 cm) Height 35.7 cm Scratched signature 'RENEE' on back of neck to right. Unique piece. As already published by Buhlmann, the "bronze exemplar which was formerly at Dr. Reber in Lausanne got lost during the war" (Britta E. Buhlmann, Renée Sintenis - Werkmonographie der Skulpturen, Darmstadt 1987, p. 146). - Lower front of neck with a broken out segment, probably during work on the bust, the breakage fitted accurately at an earlier stage. - In fine condition, with slight patina due to age.

This portrait sculpture of Gottfried Friedrich Reber (1880-1959) was created by Renée Sintenis in 1927, two years before the more familiar “Portrait of Gottlieb Friedrich Reber” (1929) by Max Beckmann, which is now located in the Wallraf Richartz Museum in Cologne (cf. Göpel. 206). The enthusiastic art lover first met Beckmann in Berlin through Alfred Flechtheim, a close friend of Reber's (see comp. illus. 1). Flechtheim as a dealer was also the well-known representative of Renée Sintenis while Reber was among the most important German collectors. Reber had started to take an interest in modern French art at an early stage, long before 1914, buying not only old masters but also Impressionists, especially works by Paul Cézanne. He then added contemporary artists, adorning his private premises with Pablo Picasso and the most important Cubists, such as Gris, Braque and Léger. After the First World War Reber and his family moved to Switzerland around 1920, first to Lugano and then to Lausanne where he died in 1959. It was undoubtedly due to Reber's personality that he was painted by Sintenis and Beckmann. Reber himself preferred Cubists of the first guard during those years, thanks to the support of Carl Einstein and his key ideas on Cubism.
Sintenis sculpted the forward-facing head of this distinct personality with an amazing sensitivity. His fine profile, his big, attentively focused eyes, his distinctively arched brows and his narrow yet softly contoured mouth add up to a timeless man's face of remarkable handsomeness, almost androgynous in its impact. Sintenis stylised the back of Reber's head in a characteristic manner, creating an upwardly stretched and focused shape that may well remind us of her “Daphne” in its expressive form, creating an effect of inner movement, tense concentration and intellectual restlessness. Characterising Reber's personality, Göpel commented: “Reber's urbane and resolute demeanour concealed his engaging and often shy character like a mask [...]. His sensitivity was focused on sight and vision in dealing with original works of art.” (Erhard and Barbara Göpel, Max Beckmann, Katalog der Gemälde, Bern 1976, p. 221). The bronze statue, created after the plaster statue, was initially in Reber's possession but was then lost (see comp. illus. 2). His search after the war remained unsuccessful .

Catalogue Raisonné

Buhlmann 26


Private possession, Rhineland (family possession)


René Crevel/ Georg Biermann (ed.), Renée Sintenis, Berlin 1930, no. 87 ("Bronze, Lausanne, bei Reber"); Die Weltkunst 22, 1952, no.16 with illus. p, 12 (notice of loss by Dr. Reber concerning his bronze); Britta E. Buhlmann, Renée Sintenis, Werkmonographie der Skulpturen, Darmstadt 1987, p. 107 and annotation 38; Peter Kropmanns/ Uwe Fleckner, Von Kontinentaler Bedeutung. Gottlieb Friedrich Reber und seine Sammlungen, in: Die Moderne und ihre Sammler, Französische Kunst in deutschem Privatbesitz vom Kaiserreich zur Weimarer Republik, Berlin 2001, p. 347 - 407; Renée Sintenis. Das plastische Werk, ed. by Ursel Berger and Günter Ladwig, commissioned by Karl H. Knauf, Berlin 2013, cat. no. 93 with illus.


Bonn 1976 (Rheinisches Landesmuseum), Die zwanziger Jahre im Porträt, cat. no. 102