Blütenzweig in Glasvase
Oil on canvas 60.8 x 49.7 cm Framed. Unsigned. Estate stamp "Hans Purmann" verso on canvas, therein handwritten archive no. "1010". - Minor colour abrasion to centre of lower margin.
Purrmann repeatedly enriched his still lifes and flower bouquets with depictions of vases and jugs. However, the transparent and reflective glass container in this painting has provided him - similarly to the metallic vessels or mirrors in his compositions - with a different opportunity to generate an animated colour field, within which he has divided up the colours into smaller compartments that produce an abstract effect. Purrmann takes up the colours of the motif and the background, but their structures are refracted and displaced within the plane. He has secured another means to use colour to generate the illusion of transparency and light - or also of three-dimensionality before the plane of the background. Since the 1920s Purrmann had repeatedly depicted slender glass vases in his paintings and transformed their appearance in a manner analogous to his compositions (cf. also “Rote Kamelien in Glasvase”, “Anemonen im Glaskrug”, “Japanische Kirschblüten in Glasvase”, Lenz/Billeter 1932/04-06).
In the present case he has masterfully succeeded in emphasising the vase and blossoming branch, in spite of the painterly agitation that the visible brushstrokes generate in the surfaces of the background. The organically expanding silhouette of the blossoming apple branch is strikingly set off with an appealing contrast and is aptly characterised with its unwieldy tree blossoms. According to Robert Purrmann the still life was created in Langenargen.
With a confirmation of authenticity by Felix Billeter, Hans Purrmann Archive, Munich, dated 27 April 2015
Regina Vollmoeller-Purrmann, Zurich (acquired from her in 1984); Private possession, Switzerland