Georg Kolbe - Kauernde
Bronze. On cast-with bronze plinth (2 x 9.7 x 10 cm) Height 23.5 cm Joined monogram 'GK' on back right side of plinth and foundry marks "H. NOACK BERLIN FRIEDENAU" on the plinth edge. One of 15 lifetime casts from 1919 onwards from the edition of Galerie Ferdinand Möller, Berlin. - Fine, even black brown patina.
The present cast is very probably a lifetime cast from the previously mentioned first edition by Ferdinand Möller. Along with Cassirer in Berlin and Arnold in Dresden, he was another dealer with whom Kolbe was working with at that time. Ferdinand Möller had exhibited the “Kauernde” for the first time in 1919, together with other works by the sculptors Kolbe, Scheibe and Marcks. Kolbe's “Sitzende” (Berger 55) was created a few years later, in 1923: it was adapted to the figure of the “Kauernde” in terms of size and form - almost quite like a complementary piece or pendant.
According to the information provided by Ursel Berger, Kolbe additionally initiated a second edition of the “Kauernde” in 1940; due to the war, however, only three casts of it could be carried out. More casts of this very popular motif were also made posthumously.
“The 'Kauernde' is characterised by a nearly symmetrical composition of great clarity. The arms and lower legs stand at right angles to one another, forming a square placed on its tip. Nevertheless, the figure does not seem artificially posed; through the head thrown back with eyes closed and a tense facial expression, it conveys an atmospherical content that is typical of Kolbe's works.” (U. Berger, op. cit., Berlin 1990, p. 238).
List of works
With a certificate by Ursel Berger, Berlin.
We would like to thank the foundry Noack, Berlin, for kind information.
Private collection Northern Germany
Wilhelm Valentiner, Georg Kolbe, Plastik und Zeichnungen, Munich 1922, p. 46 with illus. plate 23; Georg von Alten, Georg Kolbe, in: Kunst für Alle, April 1922, p. 217; Georg Kolbe (Einführung Richard Scheibe), 100 Lichtdrucktafeln, Marburg 1931, plate 20; Ursel Berger, Georg Kolbe. Das plastische Werk, in: Weltkunst, 15.11.1985, illus. 4; Ursel Berger, Georg Kolbe- Leben und Werk, mit dem Katalog der Kolbe-Plastiken im Georg-Kolbe-Museum, Berlin 1990, pp. 238 f. with illus.