Emil Nolde: The Grotesques/ Caroline Dieterich
Emil Nolde (1867–1956) is famous for his dramatic ocean views and colorful flower gardens, but his love of the fantastical and grotesque has received less attention. Yet it is clear from his autobiography and his letters that they had a significant impact on his art. Alongside his first oil painting, “Bergriesen” (“Mountain Giants,” 1895–96), his alpine postcards of this period, in which the Swiss mountains appear as bizarre human physiognomies, also convey his fascination with the fantastical. His rejection of realism in favor of a grotesque, alternative world can be seen throughout his oeuvre, from its beginnings to the Grotesken (1905) and watercolors from 1918–19, to the years under the Nazis when he was forbidden to practice his profession. This catalog, which includes works never before shown, is also the first to emphasize this fascinating side of the great painter and water-colorist.