When this volume came to the surface of my pile of ‘to lists’ I was caught by the cultural, historical and personal context of Kollwitz’s haunting work.
From propaganda posters to Pablo Picasso’s Guernica, in the first half of the 20th Century the connection between Western art and the cultural and personal history and reality for westerners and those dominated / colonized by the west was stronger than we have seen since. Worldwide events from the late years of Queen Victoria’s reign through World War II cast a long shadow. Artists like Kaethe Kollwitz created works that were not just artistically significant. They also documented the experiences of people in the country she loved- poverty, starvation, protest against war, the eyes of widows, children, those who suffered and occasional glimpses of love and happiness- women chatting, mothers with children.
This book contains 72 reproductions of Kollwitz’s drawings, etchings, woodcuts and lithographs. It is quite a study, the first in English. Between the front endpapers I found a catalog dated 1948 from a show at Gallerie St Etienne in New York. The world must still have been reeling from the devastation of World War II. Carl Zigrosser’s introduction highlights the personal and historical context that gave rise to these spare stark works which say so much so clearly.
Book condition: Very Good
Dust Jacket condition: Good
Darkened with age but tight and clean. Two small stains in blank front end papers; former owner’s name stamped on front of dj and on front end paper. Dust jacket has one significant chip and several small rips/edgewear.