Gabriele Münter - Kruzifix
Oil on card 41 x 33 cm Framed under glass. Monogrammed and dated 'MÜ.08' (M and Ü joined) in black lower right. On the reverse additionally signed, dated and titled 'Münter 1908 Kruzifix' as well as with the estate stamp "GABRIELE MÜNTER NACHLASS".
In the summer of 1908, Gabriele Münter and Wassily Kandinsky came to Murnau, on the shores of the Staffelsee, for the first time. Fascinated by the picturesque location and the direct presence of the Alpine setting, they spent their six-week stay there studying and learning together with Alexej von Jawlensky and Marianne von Werefkin. Münter experienced this period as an extremely productive phase: “During my first stay to study there, in the late summer of 1908, I was full of images of this place and its location and threw them on to cardboard sheets of 41 x 33 cm. More and more, I grasped the clarity and simplicity of this world.” (Gabriele Münter about herself, handwritten note, GM-JE-St., Kon.14, cited in: Annegret Hoberg, Gabriele Münter in München und Murnau 1901-1914, in: Annegret Hoberg und Helmut Friedel, Gabriele Münter. 1877-1962, Munich 1992, p. 31)
Münter found the motifs for her early Murnau works in views of gardens, gates decorated with flowers or the graveyard of the Murnau parish church on top of a hill. Jawlensky suggested that she focus on cropped details while painting, in order to achieve a concentrated form of the given motif (cf. ibid, p. 32). The present work shows that she readily accepted this advice. A second, almost identical version of this motif underscores the lasting impression that the ornamental effect of this detail with a crucifix flanked by two trees must have made on the artist. The “Kruzifix im Friedhof” was created in the same year and is now to be found in the collections of the Gabriele Münter- und Johannes Eichner-Stiftung in Munich.
South German private collection