Karl Hofer - Tessiner Flusslandschaft mit Brücke
Tessiner Flusslandschaft mit Brücke
Oil on canvas 63.5 x 89 cm Framed. Monogrammed and dated 'CH39' (joined) in grey lower right. - A few old retouches.
It may be thanks to the Winterthur industrialist and art collector Theodor Reinhart that Karl Hofer discovered Ticino as a summer refuge and source of inspiration. Through his son Hans, Reinhardt had already met and developed an appreciation for Hofer at a young age and would soon become his most important patron. It was through Reinhart's efforts that, during the First World War, Hofer was released to Switzerland after his internment as a German civilian in France. That was the same year, 1917, that Hofer became acquainted with Ticino during a journey there. The seemingly southern European landscape, with its Alpine foothills, would never release its hold on the painter, who moved back to Berlin again in 1919: from 1925 he spent every summer there and, a few years later, he even purchased a house on Lake Lugano, which he kept until 1939. During this period he created numerous panoramic landscape paintings that served, so to speak, as a counterweight to the figures and still lifes he painted at his studio in Berlin.
Here the painter has captured an idyllic scene stretching far into the distance. As is often the case in Hofer's landscape paintings, the course of a river leads into the image; a few houses and an - apparently unfinished - bridge running horizontally through the middle of the image remain the only signs of a human presence in this otherwise uninhabited view. The red roofs and elements of the bridge establish luminous chromatic accents in a colour scheme dominated by tones of green and brown. The composition concludes with the massive mountain ridge that towers up beneath a summery, gently blue sky.
Our painting was created in 1939, a year that also marked Hofert's departure from his paradise. While the Kunstverein Winterthur would still honour him with an exhibition to celebrate his 60th birthday, in Nazi Germany he had already been expelled from the Prussian Academy of Arts and ostracised through his prohibition from working as a painter.
Not recorded by Wohlert
With a photo-certficate from the Karl Hofer Komitee, Cologne, dated 2 Nov. 2017
The work will be included in the Karl Hofer catalogue raisonné and is registered in the Karl Hofer Archive under the number N 13.
Formerly private collection, North Rhine-Westphalia (acquired directly from the artist in 1953); in family possession since