Maler und Modell - Dichter und Weib. 1907. Woodcut in colors. Gercken 186. Dube H 117. Schiefler H 99. With title "Der Dichter und Weib". Lower margin inscribed by a hand other than that of the artist. One of just 3 known copies. On Blotting paper (with embossing "Silk Blotting Huber Frères Winterthur). 50 x 37.2 cm (19.6 x 14.6 in). Sheet: 57,8 x 44,3 cm (22,7 x 17,4 in). The man depicted presumably is Hans Frisch, whom Kirchner portrayed in a woodcut and a lithograph from the same year (cf. Gercken 184 and 185). [KP]. Very rare.
PROVENANCE: Stuttgarter Kunstkabinett Roman Norbert Ketterer, Stuttgart, auction 28, 28/29 May, 1957, lot 393. Private collection Berlin.
Just as many his artist colleagues did, Kirchner became occupied with woodcuts from an early point on. The Expressionists soon realized that the method was a great challenge for the them, especially for the material's brittleness. It were members of 'Brücke' and the 'Blaue Reiter' who gave an importance to the woodcut in German Modernism that had been unimaginable. Superior theme of the woodcut "Maler und Modell - Dichter und Weib" definitely is the allegory of female inspiration, the muse that inspires the artist in his creative process. Kirchner illustrates this in our fine sheet in warm shades of gold-orange and a rich dark blue, by putting the model's mouth near the protagonist's left ear, visualizing the elsewise invisible act of inspiration as a noticeable and visible communication. What is particular felicitous about this sheet is the amalgamation of the depicted persons on the paper, as the model's face seems to dissolve and the hair of man and woman become one.