Drypoint. Hofmaier 74 B b (of c). Signed and dated. One of ca. 50 copies on various types of paper. Auf Bütten von J.W. Zanders (mit Wasserzeichen). On laid paper by J.W. Zanders (with watermark) 23,5 x 17,7 cm (9,2 x 6,9 in). Sheet: 44,3 x 36 cm (17,5 x 14,3 in).Papier: 44,3 x 36 cm (17,5 x 14,3 in). Released in 1918 by publishing house J.B. Neumann, Berlin.
PROVENANCE: Private collection South Germany (acquired by Roman Norbert Ketterer from the Stuttgart Kunstkabinett in 1952).
The striking self portrait, which reminds the observer of Rembrandt's etched self portraits in terms of its melancholically searching look and the unusual focus on the chiaroscuro, show Beckmann in his early years, doubtful and yet with an energetic facial expression. The exploration of the self begins with the artist's emancipation and the development towards an independent person. This self-portrait expresses this quest, which ocupies a prime position in the history of Western painting. [KD].