“CITY OF WOMEN”

Vienna, 27 January 2019

My wife and I have just been to see a wonderful exhibition which opened a few days ago in Vienna’s Belvedere Palace – we’re up in Vienna for a couple of weeks. It is titled Stadt der Frauen, City of Women. Its aim is to bring back into the public gaze the works of a bevy of women artists who were active in Vienna in the first thirty years of the 20th Century. At the beginning of this period, the first years of the 1900s, these women were fighting to be officially recognized as painters in what was then a completely male-dominated art world. At the end of this period, and more specifically after the Anschluss of 1938, many of them emigrated or were murdered in the Nazi concentration camps, and their works disappeared, either burned and smashed by Fascist hit-squads as “degenerate art” or hidden away in attics and cellars and then forgotten. It is right and fitting that these women’s works should finally re-emerge from the shadows. The BBC web site has an article on the exhibition for any of my readers who are interested in more detail.

I show here a sample of the works on show; apart from a couple (where my focus was off), the photos were taken by me on my phone. The only didactic principle driving my choices were, “would I like them on my wall (or mantelpiece)?”, a principle about which I feel strongly and have written about at length in a previous post. I show first the paintings, then the drawings, lithographs, woodcuts, etchings, and then the statues, all in chronological order – art was changing so fast in this period that I think seeing it in the order they were prepared helps to appreciate them.

Paintings

Olga Wisinger-Florian, Flowering Poppies, 1895/1900
Olga Wisinger-Florian, Duck Pond, c. 1900
Emilie Mediz-Pelikan, Flowering Chestnut Trees, 1900
Broncia Koller-Pinell, Early Market, 1907
Fanny Harlfinger-Zakucka, Willows, c. 1908
Broncia Koller-Pinell, The Harvest, 1908
Broncia Koller-Pinell, Potters’ Market, 1910
Broncia Koller-Pinell, Still Life with Fruit and Parrot, 1910
Johanna Kampann-Freund, The Dead Child, 1913
Leontine von Littrow, Steamer off the Shore, 1915
Marie-Louise von Motesiczky, Self-Portrait with Comb, 1926 [this is actually a copy; the original was going to join the exhibition a few days after our visit]
Fanny Harlfinger-Zakucka, Freystadt, 1927
Lillie Steiner, Portrait of Lilian Gaertner, 1927
Stephanie Hollenstein, Falzarego in the Dolomites, 1932
Friedl Dicker, Interrogation II, 1934-38

Drawings, lithographs, woodcuts, etchings

Elza Kövesházi-Kalmár, Landscape with City in the Background, c. 1903
Helene von Taussig, Bare Tree, c. 1909

Elisabeth Karlinsky, Figure in Motion, 1923
Gertraud Reinberger-Brausewetter, Lonely Woman, 1926
Ilse Bernheimer, Boats No. 2 (undated)

Statues

Elza Kövesházi-Kalmár, Dancer (Butterfly), 1910/11
Elza Kövesházi-Kalmár, Head of a Man (Josef Kainz) (undated)
_________________________

Pictures: all mine, except:

Flowering poppies: http://www.the-athenaeum.org/art/full.php?ID=152256
Flowering Chestnuts: https://www.wien.info/en/sightseeing/museums-exhibitions/city-of-women-female-artists-in-vienna-unteres-belvedere

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Abellio

I like writing, but I’ve spent most of my life writing about things that don’t particularly interest me. Finally, as I neared the age of 60, I decided to change that. I wanted to write about things that interested me. What really interests me is beauty. So I’ve focused this blog on beautiful things. I could be writing about a formally beautiful object in a museum. But it could also be something sitting quietly on a shelf. Or it could be just a fleeting view that's caught my eye, or a momentary splash of colour-on-colour at the turn of the road. Or it could be a piece of music I've just heard. Or a piece of poetry. Or food. And I’m sure I’ve missed things. But I’ll also write about interesting things that I hear or read about. Isn't there a beauty about things pleasing to the mind? I started just writing, but my wife quickly persuaded me to include photos. I tried it and I liked it. So my posts are now a mix of words and pictures, most of which I find on the internet. What else about me? When I first started this blog, my wife and I lived in Beijing where I was head of the regional office of the UN Agency I worked for. So at the beginning I wrote a lot about things Chinese. Then we moved to Bangkok, where again I headed up my Agency's regional office. So for a period I wrote about Thailand and South-East Asia more generally. But we had lived in Austria for many years before moving to China, and anyway we both come from Europe my wife is Italian while I'm half English, half French - so I often write about things European. Now I'm retired and we've moved back to Europe, so I suppose I will be writing a lot more about the Old Continent, interspersed with posts we have gone to visit. What else? We have two grown children, who had already left the nest when we moved to China, but they still figure from time to time in my posts. I’ll let my readers figure out more about me from reading what I've written. As these readers will discover, I really like trees. So I chose a tree - an apple tree, painted by the Austrian painter Gustav Klimt - as my gravatar. And I chose Abellio as my name because he is the Celtic God of the apple tree. I hope you enjoy my posts. http://ipaintingsforsale.com/UploadPic/Gustav Klimt/big/Apple Tree I.jpg

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