Tulpen, Mohn und Stiefmütterchen
Watercolour on Japan paper 45.8 x 26.6 cm Framed under glass. Signed 'Nolde' in pencil lower right. - Vibrant colours.
For the present floral piece Emil Nolde has selected a narrow vertical format, within which the cheerful and upwardly surging composition of spring flowers is able to develop in the most beautiful way. Long-stemmed tulips grow up out of bushy pansies packed closely together. The pyramidal and symmetrical profile of the tulips' still-closed flowers has been intensified; they are joined by the open eye of a red poppy flower which luxuriantly fills the right side of the depicted space and is partly cut off by the picture's edge. The colours are radiant and complementary, and nuanced degrees of brightness are distributed all across the sheet. The watercolour's fluid composition contains almost no contours and presents a characteristic example of Nolde's late style, also conveying the confidence of his artistic instinct when dealing with this painting technique.
Here the artist greets us in his flowers, as though with a smile and a hello, a symbolic salutation from nature simultaneously emerges out of his chromatic harmonies and free compositions, transcending the motif.
With a photo-certficate from Martin Urban, Seebüll, 5 March 1989
Private collection, Rhineland
Galerie Neher, Blickpunkte - Bilder und Skulpturen von 1903 - 1989, Essen 1990, p. 5 with illus.