Sale: 535 / Evening Sale with Collection Hermann Gerlinger, Dec. 09. 2022 in Munich Lot 63

 

63
Georg Kolbe
Adagio, 1923.
Bronze with golden brown patina
Estimate:
€ 80,000 / $ 75,200
Sold:
€ 212,500 / $ 199,750

(incl. surcharge)
Adagio. 1923.
Bronze with golden brown patina.
Berger 58. With the monogram on the reverse of the base. According to Dr Ursel Berger, presumably one of 15 lifetime casts. Cast by art foundry Hermann Noack, Berlin. 81 x 18.5 x 15 cm (31.8 x 7.2 x 5.9 in).

• "Adagio" met the taste of the "Roaring Twenties" and is among Kolbe's most popular figures.
• This is one of Kolbe's few figures from his expressionist phase.
• The sculpture masterfully represents Kolbe's aspiration to committ to the closed form in favor of a concentrated expression.
• In music, Adagio means "slow with great expression" – with great virtuoso Kolbe translates a musical tempo into a sculpture.
• Other copies are at The Art Institute of Chicago, the St. Petersburg Hermitage and the Museum für Kunsthandwerk, Dresden
.

Accompanied by a written expertise issued by Dr. Ursel Berger on October 26, 2022.

PROVENANCE: Private collection (since ca. 1970).
Ever since family-owned.

LITERATURE: Georg Kolbe, 100 Lichtdrucktafeln, Marburg 1931 (different copy).
Ludwig Justi, Georg Kolbe, Berlin 1931, plate 9 (different copy).
Rudolf Binding, Vom Leben der Plastik. Inhalt und Schönheit des Werkes von Georg Kolbe, Berlin 1933, p. 50.
Günter Reinheckel, Kunsthandwerk und Industrieform, 100 Jahre Museum für Kunsthandwerk Dresden, 1876-1976, Dresden 1976, p. 151 (different copy).
Carl Graepler, Marburger Universitätsmuseum für bildende Kunst, Fünfzig ausgestellte Werke der Plastik, Marburg 1986, p. 60 (different copy).
Ursel Berger, Georg Kolbe 1877-1947, ex. cat. Georg Kolbe Museum, Berlin, 1998, p. 53 (with illu.).

"I no longer make my sculptures in front of nature [..]. I got closer to the nature of the sculpture, I can give more expression to the form."
Georg Kolbe, 1924

In the mid-1920s, Georg Kolbe had reached the peak of his creation. Even though it was initially rejected by contemporaries, the mature work of this period still enjoys great popularity today. The symbolic content, which is largely missing in Georg Kolbe’s sculptures from before World War I, now found integration into a work that also gained in its meaningful development of formal expression. For some time in the early 1920s, Georg Kolbe made the self-contained form the determining factor of his works. The sculptures of this time embody this formal will in a previously unknown unity of physical closeness. A certain formalism, which Kolbe deliberately pursued in order to increase expression, was met with incomprehension by many his contemporaries, as the common perception was still deeply rooted in the sculptural works from before the war. His female figures of the 1920s embody a self-confident, rather androgynous ideal of beauty in contrast to the youthful tenderness of his earlier figures. The almost androgynous nature of the female figures served to concentrate expression in a positive sense. The "Adagio" is a particularly beautiful example of this development. The graceful slender female figure builds up in almost elongated proportions, only subtle movements, such as the slightly bent leg, the slanted shoulder and the tilted head are present in the figure. The "Adagio" conveys the impression of complete inwardness and static calm, underscored by its title. In music, Adagio means “slow with great expression“. The style is strongly characterized by clear lines and jagged forms, which becomes particularly obvious in the folds of the robe. They are reminiscent of elements of Art Deco. In the present work, Kolbe's occupation with new artistic forms is particularly evident, especially an increased interested in architectural aspects such as space and proportion, volume and lightness. Despite the more severe stylistic forms, Kolbe was able to model a female figure characterized by a touching emphasis. With her self-absorbed, almost contemplative expression, it would become one of the artist's most popular creations. [SM]



63
Georg Kolbe
Adagio, 1923.
Bronze with golden brown patina
Estimate:
€ 80,000 / $ 75,200
Sold:
€ 212,500 / $ 199,750

(incl. surcharge)