Urpflanzlich. 1941. Oil on fibreboard. Grohmann 591 (as Urpflanzlich IV), Baumeister/Beye 909. Lower right signed and dated. Verso inscribed "Eigentum Willi Baumeister 1941". 53.5 x 65.5 cm (21 x 25.7 in). Not numbered by the artist, just as the other variations of this theme. [KT]. • One of just four variants of the theme made between 1939-1941 • Most accomplished composition in the series "Urpflanzlich" as it is the series' last work • Works from this group are very rare on the auction market • Playful lines in arabesque ornamentation reference his reception of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's botanical writing "Versuch die Metamorphose der Pflanzen zu erklären" (1790) • From the sought-after "Eidos" series.
PROVENANCE: Collection Dr. Klihm, Munich. A. Hansell Paine, Valdosta, Georgia (USA). Galerie Sander, Darmstadt. Private collection Rhineland (acquired from aforemntioned in 1999).
LITERATURE: Kurt Herberts, Untersuchungen über die Anwendbarkeit historischer Malverfahren, Wuppertal/Stuttgart 1940, pp. 89f. Willi Baumeister, Zimmer- und Wandgeister, published by Heinz Spielmann, in: Jahrbuch der Hamburger Kunstsammlungen, vol. 12, 1967, p. 156. Christa Lichtenstern, Metamorphose in der Kunst des 19. und 20. Jahrhunderts, vol 1, Weinheim 1990, pp. 104ff, and vol. 2, Weinheim 1992, pp. 362ff. Christie’s London, German and Austrian Art ’98, auction October 8, 1998, lot 225 (with color illu.). "My idea of the ‘realm of the organic’ embodied in the plants‘ forces of growth was reflected in a symbolic representation of the prehistoric landscape, in which the plants grow in steamy tropical surroundings .. I stuck to the metamorphosis of the plant described by Goethe as well as to his idea of an ideal primal plant, the strength of which promises all cultivation and forms." Willi Baumeister, in: Kurt Herberts, Untersuchungen über die Anwendbarkeit historischer Malverfahren, Wuppertal/Stuttgart 1940, p. 89f.