Paula Modersohn-Becker - Landschaft mit Birkenweg im Herbst - image-1

Lot 55 Dα

Paula Modersohn-Becker - Landschaft mit Birkenweg im Herbst

Evening Sale - Modern and Contemporary Art  03.12.2021, 18:00 - 03.12.2021, 21:00

Estimate: 80.000 € - 100.000 €
Result: 81.250 €

Paula Modersohn-Becker

Landschaft mit Birkenweg im Herbst
Circa 1900

Oil on artist's board 40.3 x 53.8 cm Framed. Verso with faded illegible confirmation by Otto Modersohn and inscribed "Worpswede Sept. 1923" and "L H HB"[?]. - In fine condition with fresh colours.

The landscape of Worpswede is defined by the brown of the moor, the greenish brown of the heather, the windswept trees and a lofty sky. It was in these inhospitable surroundings - which offered their inhabitants only a modest living defined by difficult labour - where Paula Modersohn-Becker lived from 1898, when she joined the artist's colony which had gathered there around her teacher Fritz Mackensen, Hans am Ende, Heinrich Vogeler and her future husband Otto Modersohn. Like her male colleagues, she found an inexhaustible source of inspiration in the austere beauty of the landscape and the simple existence of its inhabitants. From the beginning the artist was searching for her own independent way of expressing herself artistically - earnestly and unsentimentally seeking the greatest possible authenticity. She developed a reductive, two-dimensional manner of painting that concentrated on the image's essential messages. This was entirely in harmony with nature's unwelcoming character at Worpswede and additionally pointed to the new ideas among avant-garde artists.
Here, between the clouds torn apart by the wind, a gently blue sky rises above a landscape dominated by tones of brown. A farm track describes a gentle curve in the middle of the heather-covered fields; it is lined with young birch trees whose leaves have already turned to autumn colours. Their delicately rising little trunks form the focus of the painter's interest while the plain stretching all the way to the horizon is summarily depicted. There is a balance between the earthy gravity and the optimism in this work from around 1900, and they can be seen as a metaphor for the course that Paula Modersohn-Becker's artistic development would take in the years that followed.

Catalogue Raisonné

Busch/Werner 133; Otto Modersohn's directory (1921) 121


Estate of the artist; Private possession, Bremen (1923); Worpsweder Kunsthalle Friedrich Netzel, Worpswede; Dr. Ernst Hauswedell, Hamburg, 1968, Auktion 160, lot 898; Private possession, Berlin (ca. 1970); Leo Spik, Berlin, 1992, Auktion 562, lot 226; Graphisches Kabinett Kunsthandel Wolfgang Werner, Bremen/Berlin, acquired there in 1992; Private collection, Berlin


1992/1993 Berlin/Bremen (Graphisches Kabinett Kunsthandel Wolfgang Werner), Paula Modersohn-Becker. Gemälde, Zeichnungen, Graphik, cat. no. 6 with colour ill.