Sale: 400 / Modern Art, Dec. 08. 2012 in Munich Lot 42

 
42
Gabriele Münter
Narvik Hafen, 1916.
Oil on canvas
Estimate:
€ 120,000 / $ 132,000
Sold:
€ 207,400 / $ 228.140

(incl. 22% surcharge)
Lot description
Narvik Hafen. 1916.
Oil on canvas.
Signed and dated lower right. Verso with faded estate stamp as well as inscribed on a label with estate number "L. 470", both by hand and typographic. 47,5 x 64,2 cm (18,7 x 25,2 in).
One of the rare Norwegian landscapes in Gabriele Münter's oeuvre.

Accompanied by a written expertise issued by the Gabriele Münter- and Johannes Eichner-Foundation, Munich, dated 10. December, 2012. The work will be included into the catalog raisonné of Gabriele Münter's paintings.

PROVENANCE: Private collection Northern Germany.

EXHIBITION: Der Sturm, 58th exhibition. Gösta Adrian-Nilsson, Paul Klee, Gabriele Münter. Paintings and watercolors, drawings, Berlin, December 1917, cat. no. 79 (with label on veros).
Maleriudstilling. Gabriele Münter-Kandinsky, Københavns Ny Kunstsal, Copenhagen, October 1919 (with label on verso).
Gabriele Münter 1908 - 1933, travelling exhibition Bremen/Bochum 1933, Jena/Eisennach 1934, Altenburg/Stuttgart 1935, no. 28a (with label on stretcher).
Galerie Valentien, Königsbau, Stuttgart, no date, no. 18 (with label on stretcher).

Gabriele Münter received her first art lessons at the 'Damen-Kunstschule' (Ladies Art School) in Düsseldorf and then attended the Society of Woman Artists as M. Dasio's and A. Jank's pupil. Then she went to Munich where she visited the private art school 'Phalanx' which was run by Wassily Kandinsky. In 1904 Münter and Kandinsky began travelling together: to Holland, Italy, France - where they met Rousseau and Matisse - and elsewhere. Stylistically she now distanced herself from Impressionism and her works began showing Fauve and Expressionist influences. In 1908 she and Kandinsky began leading a calmer life in their apartment in Munich. They often met with Klee, Marc, Macke, Jawlensky and Marianne von Werefkin. The country house Münter bought in Murnau provided an ideal working environment. In 1909 the artist began painting glass, a medium which would later also be adopted by Kandinsky, Marc, Macke and Campendonk. Münter was a member of the 'Neue Künstlervereinigung München' for two years and in 1911 she joined the 'Blaue Reiter', the artist group founded by Kandinsky and Marc. She was interested in Kandinsky's development towards abstract art, but her own works continued to be figurative. Her landscapes, figurative scenes and portraits show a reduction to the essential with an inclination towards humorous characterization. When war broke out, Münter and Kandinsky at first moved to Switzerland. Münter, however, decided a year later to go to Stockholm, where she separated from Kandinsky.

The result of a journey to Norway onto which Gabriele Münter went from Stockholm in 1916 were two versions of views of the Narvik harbor, that only minimally differ in staffage - with and without dog - and the bushes in teh foreground (cf. A. Hoberg/H. Friedel (publisher), Gabriele Münter 1877-1962. Retrospective, ex. catt. Lenbachhaus München and Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt 1992/1993, cat. no. 151 (L 544)). Our version with the original label of the exhibition "Der Sturm" has to be the earlier version, for which the low work number is also proof. After notes and sketches made in Norway, this work was presumably executed in Stockholm in 1916. The text in the catalog for the Gabriele-Münter exhibition in 1992/93 blends both versions, as only our version is dated and signed. The other, and later, version is only signed. The fact alone that Münter made several almost identical versions speaks for the great importance the subject had to her. The composition‘s arrangement resembles that of her later Staffelsee pictures. The view from above stretches a perspective that Münter never really felt. The wide paralleling paths in the foreground marks a spatial distance from the actual view onto the harbor. Repeated subjects are not uncommon in Münter’s art, however, they are usually strongly differing variations.

The end of their relationship led to a deep creative depression, Münter’s painting did not revive before the 1930s. After 1931 she spent most of her time in Murnau and Munich. In 1956 she received the Culture Prize of the City of Munich. The year 1960 saw the first exhibition of Münter's work in the US, followed in 1961 by a large show in the Mannheim Kunsthalle. The artist died in her house at Murnau on 19 May 1962. [KD].

42
Gabriele Münter
Narvik Hafen, 1916.
Oil on canvas
Estimate:
€ 120,000 / $ 132,000
Sold:
€ 207,400 / $ 228.140

(incl. 22% surcharge)