Max Beckman (1884-1950)
From Lackner's Der Mensck 1st Kein Haustier
July 31, 1967
Lithograph on Paper
5.25"x8.25" unframed paper size, 4"x6" image size
Unsigned. Limited edition of 100. Authentification notes with date, edition, and medium on cardboard backing to linen mat. Good vintage condition with discoloration to the paper around image area. Stamped with the Bassett collection estate stamp on the back lower right of paper.
From the estate of Edyth and Phillip Bassett.
20th century painter, printmaker, and draftsman, Max Beckmann (1884-1950) was a leading artist associated with German Expressionism and the Neue Sachlichkeit movement, both of which emphasized social realism by doing away with aestheticizing techniques and rendering critical expressive portraits of contemporary society. Dedicated to figuration and the human psyche, Beckmann’s work is characterized by themes of fantasy, lore and mythos with images of the underbelly of society - the cabaret singer, the thugs, the cut-throat business men, the outcast, etc. Deeply affected by his service in the medical corps during World War I, Beckmann suffered a mental breakdown in 1915, contributing to the grotesque and complex nature of his work.
Like many progressive german artists of this era, Beckmann’s work was attacked by the National Socialist press. In 1933, after Hitler’s appointment to chancellor of Germany, he was removed from his teaching position at Frankfurt’s Städel Art School and his paintings exiled from the Berlin National Gallery. Many of his works were included in the infamous ‘Degenerate Art Exhibition’ in 1937, put on by the Nazi regime to condemn the subversive work of these modernist painters. Many art historians regard this show as ironically, one of the greatest exhibitions of modern art, featuring the work of other notable artists such as Paul Klee, Pablo Picasso, Marc Chagall, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, and many others.
Following this, Beckmann fled to the United States, finally settling in New York City, teaching at the Brooklyn Museum Art School. His work is held by the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, the Städel Museum in Frankfurt am Main, the Tate Gallery in London, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Kunstmuseum Basel, among others. View The Legends of Modern Art Collection & Read the Bassett Family Story