Blick aufs Gebirge mit gelber Wolke
Oil on canvas. 38.5 x 55.3 cm. Framed. Signed 'Münter' in grey lower left. Signed, titled and dated 'Gabriele Münter Blick aufs Gebirge mit gelber Wolke 1934' verso on stretcher with blue crayon and marked with the work number '101b / 34' (in a circle). - With retouches, primarily to the mountain lines. With some localised abrasions to the canvas along the stretcher edges.
In the summer of 1909 the painter Gabriele Münter purchased a multiple-storey house surrounded by a garden in the Upper Bavarian town of Murnau. The locals called it the “Russian House” because, in addition to Münter’s romantic partner Wassily Kandinsky, Marianne von Werefkin and Alexei Jawlensky were also regular visitors there. With the surrounding mountains, lakes and fen, this area – referred to as the “blue country”, due to its special climatic situation – became Münter’s favourite motif. In Murnau she developed her personal style and experienced a highly productive period in her oeuvre.
After the First World War and her separation from Kandinsky, she repeatedly returned to Murnau, which provided her with a place of tranquillity, and in 1931 she moved there permanently with her new romantic partner Johannes Eichner. Harking back to her motifs and style from the years before the war, she created the painting “Blick aufs Gebirge mit gelber Wolke”, which is dated to 1934. Seen from an elevated vantage point, it shows a view of the Wetterstein mountains with the triangular Eschenloher Kögl before them. In the foreground, five tall trees press into the picture from the right: their rusty brown leaves lead us to conclude that Münter created this painting in the autumn. The main elements have been delineated using her pictorial techniques from the years before the war – painted shapes are surrounded by black contours and feature bold colours – so that Münter, as she writes, succeeds in achieving “the feeling of a subject matter” and “abstracting and providing an extract” (cited in: Der Blaue Reiter, exh. cat. Kunsthalle Bremen, Cologne 2000, p. 122). Together with “Blick aufs Gebirge” (Lenbachhaus), which features a related motif and is also from 1934, the landscape up for auction here is a central work from this period of her oeuvre.
With a confirmation from Isabelle Jansen, Gabriele Münter- und Johannes Eichner-Stiftung, Munich, dated 24 March 2023. The painting will be included in the catalogue raisonné of Gabriele Münter's paintings published by the Gabriele Münter- und Johannes Eichner-Stiftung. The painting is listed in the artist's workbook of 1934 under no. 101b.
Private collection, Franconia; Math. Lempertz'sche Kunstversteigerung, Köln, Auktion 515, Kunst des XX. Jahrhunderts, 29 April 1971, Lot 779; Private collection, Bavaria