Cover for the Brücke Portfolio of 1910
Erich Heckel (German, 1883–1970)
Block: 30 x 40 cm (11 13/16 x 15 3/4 in.) Sheet: 41.9 x 55 cm (16 1/2 x 21 5/8 in.)
Medium or Technique
Woodcut on yellow paper, trial proof
Not On View
In block: Brücke 1910/EL/Kirchner; l.r.: EH
Verso bottom, in violet ink: Kunsthütte Chemnitz stamp (crossed out); in green ink: Galerie Ferdinand Möller stamp, inscribed "Erworben lt. Vertrag 1940" (acquired according to contract 1940).
Probably about 1925, acquired by the Kunsthütte Chemnitz, Germany; August 19, 1937, removed from Chemnitz and taken by the Nazi propaganda ministry to Berlin [see note 1]; 1938, probably transferred to Schloss Niederschönhausen, near Berlin and, in 1940, exchanged with the Galerie Ferdinand Möller, Berlin [see note 2]. 1986, Theodore B. Donson, Ltd., New York [see note 3]. June 20, 2002, sale, Galerie Kornfeld, Bern, lot 446, to Garton and Co., Devizes, Wiltshire, England; 2005, sold by Garton and Co. to the MFA. (Accession Date: April 27, 2005)
 Between August and October 1937, works of art that were identified as "degenerate"--in particular, avant-garde or abstract modern paintings, works on paper, and sculptures--were removed from German public collections. The Nazi propaganda ministry took charge of these works of art, eventually selling or trading many of them, and destroying others. This print is listed among the works of art by Heckel taken from the collection of the Kunsthütte Chemnitz (Reichsministerium für Volksaufklärung und Propaganda, " 'Entartete' Kunst," typescript inventory, 1942 [?], n. p., no. 10058, "Umschlag-Entwurf"). The verso bears a stamp from the Kunsthütte Chemnitz, which has been crossed out.
 Many works of "degenerate" art that were considered marketable were taken to the Schloss Niederschönhausen to be sold for foreign currency. Four dealers were appointed to sell the art at Niederschönhausen, including Ferdinand Möller. The " 'Entartete' Kunst" inventory (as above, n. 1) notes that Heckel's woodcut was exchanged with Möller. The verso of the print bears a stamp from the Galerie Ferdinand Möller. In pencil, it is inscribed "Erworben lt. Vertrag 1940" (acquired according to contract, 1940).
 Expressionist Woodcuts, 1905-1925: Eigendrucke (exh. cat., Theodore B. Donson, Ltd., New York, April-May, 1986), n.p., cat. no. 15.
Virginia Herrick Deknatel Purchase Fund
© Erich Heckel Estate, D-78343 Hemmenhofen