Zeichnung zum gelben Hafen. 1921/1926. India ink drawing. KIee 2627. Signed in lower right of image. Dated, titled and with work number '1921/36' in lower center of backing board. On creme paper, laminated on original backing board. 19.8 x 28.8 cm (7.7 x 11.3 in). Backing board: 23,5 x 31,7 cm (9,2 x 12,4 in). This drawing was made in context of the oil paint drawing "Gelber Hafen" (Klee 2617), with same title and similar motif, which today is in possession of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. [JS].
PROVENANCE: Alexej von Jawlensky, Wiesbaden (until 1941). Leonard Hutton Galleries, New York. Heinz Berggruen, Paris/Berlin. Collection Madeleine and Harvey Plonsker, Glencoe/Illinois (ca. 1987-2014).
EXHIBITION: Paul Klee. Das Frühwerk 1883 - 1922, Munich, Städtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus, 12 December, 1979 - 2 March, 1980, no. 442, with illu. (with label on rear of frame). Paul Klee. Selección de sesenta obras. The Berggruen Collection in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Mexico City, Centro Cultural Arte Contemporaneo, October 1989 - January 1990, no. 29, with illu.
LITERATURE: Will Grohmann, Paul Klee. Handzeichnungen 1921-1930, Potsdam/Berlin 1934, no. 3. Sabine Rewald, Paul Klee. The Berggruen Collection in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York 1988, p. 137 with illu. Die Blaue Vier. Feininger, Jawlensky, Kandinsky und Klee in der neuen Welt, ex. cat. Kunstmuseum Bern 5 December, 1997 - 1 march, 1998/Kunstsammlung North Rhine-Westphalia Düsseldorf 28 March - 28 June, 1998, Düsseldorf, p. 95 with illu.
This feather drawing is entirely characterized by bizarre-surreal elements that occupied a dominant role in Paul Klee's graphic oeuvre. A stickman and mechanic gadgetry, of which boat and anchor can clearly be identified despite the naive-abstract style, inhibit the sheet and make for its childishly merry atmosphere. The well-balanced composition meanders through a series of events in which ships play a decisive role. Paul Klee narrated his harbor scene, in which he put a focus on formal experiments geared at Constructivism, in a simple and playful manner and with a pinch of humor. To us the detailed India ink drawing is a document of a subtle joy of creation which finds particular expression in small subjects.