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THE COLLECTION

Max Beckmann (German, 1884–1950)

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From the portfolio

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  • Max Beckmann. Self-Portrait in the Hotel (Selbst im Hotel) fromTrip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
    Self-Portrait in the Hotel (Selbst im...
    1922
    Max Beckmann. Self-Portrait in the Hotel (Selbst im Hotel) fromTrip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
  • Max Beckmann. The Disillusioned I (Die Enttäuschten I) from the portfolio Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
    The Disillusioned I (Die...
    1922
    Max Beckmann. The Disillusioned I (Die Enttäuschten I) from the portfolio Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
  • Max Beckmann. Night (Die Nacht) from the portfolioTrip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
    Night (Die Nacht) from the...
    1922
    Max Beckmann. Night (Die Nacht) from the portfolioTrip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
  • Max Beckmann. Striptease (Nackttanz) fromTrip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
    Striptease (Nackttanz) fromTrip to...
    1922
    Max Beckmann. Striptease (Nackttanz) fromTrip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
  • Max Beckmann. The Ice Skater (Der Schlittschuhläufer) fromTrip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
    The Ice Skater (Der...
    1922
    Max Beckmann. The Ice Skater (Der Schlittschuhläufer) fromTrip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
  • Max Beckmann. The Disillusioned II (Die Enttäuschten II) from the portfolio Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
    The Disillusioned II (Die...
    1922
    Max Beckmann. The Disillusioned II (Die Enttäuschten II) from the portfolio Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
  • Max Beckmann. The Beggars (Die Bettler) from the portfolio Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
    The Beggars (Die Bettler) from the...
    1922
    Max Beckmann. The Beggars (Die Bettler) from the portfolio Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
  • Max Beckmann. The Theater Lobby (Das Theaterfoyer) from Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
    The Theater Lobby (Das Theaterfoyer)...
    1922
    Max Beckmann. The Theater Lobby (Das Theaterfoyer) from Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
  • Max Beckmann. Tavern (Kaschemme) from Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
    Tavern (Kaschemme) from Trip to...
    1922
    Max Beckmann. Tavern (Kaschemme) from Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
  • Max Beckmann. The Chimney Sweep (Der Schornsteinfeger) from the portfolio Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922
    The Chimney Sweep (Der Schornsteinfeger)...
    1922
    Max Beckmann. The Chimney Sweep (Der Schornsteinfeger) from the portfolio Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922). 1922

About the portfolio

Heather Hess, German Expressionist Digital Archive Project, German Expressionism: Works from the Collection. 2011.

As depicted in Max Beckmann's portfolio Berliner Reise 1922 (Trip to Berlin 1922), in the years just after revolutionary upheavals following Germany's defeat in World War I, Berlin is a city of disillusioned people quietly resigned to their fates. Neither politics nor sex can rouse any interest. The rich play cards, attend the theater, and while away the hours in boredom. The poor beg on the street, sleep in cramped quarters, and enjoy the momentary distractions of a dive bar.

In these prints, Beckmann chronicles the many sides of life in the capital of the new Republic. Emphasizing the claustrophobic and discordant, he compresses scenes in tight, windowlike frames that barely contain the figures that fill them. By contrast, he depicts himself alone in three self-portraits, as an outsider who observes but does not participate, arriving in the city with suitcase in hand, sitting in his hotel room, and, as a chimneysweep in the final print, surveying the city in the new dawn.

PUBLISHING HISTORY

Beckmann conceived of this series as a sequel and moral complement to Hölle (Hell), his 1919 portfolio of postwar Berlin. He visited Berlin in early 1922, and by April the lithographs were ready for printing. Pleased, he wrote to publisher J. B. Neumann: "I think it ended up being a good and actually quite amusing thing."

Max Beckmann (German, 1884–1950)

The Portfolio

Trip to Berlin 1922 (Berliner Reise 1922)

Date:
1922
Medium:
Portfolio of eleven lithographs (including cover)
Dimensions:
composition (each approx.): 18 3/4 x 14 1/8" (47.7 x 35.8 cm); sheet (each approx.): 21 15/16 x 21 1/8" (55.8 x 53.7 cm)
Paper:
Cream, slightly textured, wove.
Publisher:
J. B. Neumann, Berlin
Printer:
C. Naumann's Druckerei, Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Edition:
100 (with about probably 60 sets issued in half-linen portfolio with on the front cover either the lithograph "Self-portrait with Suitcase" [this ex.] or a lithographed list of titles)
Credit Line:
Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Fund
Copyright:
© 2016 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn
Reference:
Glaser 187-196. Gallwitz 181(1)-191. Hofmaier 212-222.
MoMA Number:
310.1951.1-11
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