Self-Portrait in the Hotel; plate 1 of Berliner Reise
Selbst im Hotel
Max Beckmann (German, 1884–1950)
Hofmaier 213 B; G. 182, Plate 1
Image (irregular): 44.7 x 31.2 cm (17 5/8 x 12 5/16 in.) Sheet: 67.5 x 53.5 cm (26 9/16 x 21 1/16 in.)
Medium or Technique
Not On View
Lower right, signed in graphite pencil: Beckmann
Lower left in graphite pencil: 9/100
Recto, stamped in red ink -- mark of the Graphische Sammlung der Kunsthütte der Chemnitz
Graphische Sammlung, Kunsthütte Chemnitz, Germany; August 19, 1937, removed from Chemnitz and taken by the Nazi propaganda ministry to Berlin [see note 1]; probably transferred to Schloss Niederschönhausen, near Berlin, and on March 21, 1941, sold to Hildebrand Gurlitt (b. 1895 - d. 1956), Hamburg [see note 2]. 1965, sold by the Weyhe Gallery, New York, to the MFA. (Accession Date: November 10, 1965)
 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. The group of prints making up the portfolio "Berliner Reise" (MFA accession nos. 65.1323 - 65.1332) is listed among the works of art by Beckmann taken from the collection of the Kunsthütte Chemnitz (Reichsministerium für Volksaufklärung und Propaganda, " 'Entartete' Kunst," typescript inventory, 1942 [?], n. p., no. 10215, as "Mappe: Berlin, 1922"). The verso of each print bears a stamp from the Kunsthütte Chemnitz and the portfolio cover bears the number 10215.
 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 Hildebrand Gurlitt. The " 'Entartete' Kunst" inventory (as above, n. 1) notes that Beckmann's portfolio was sold to Gurlitt. The date of the sale is taken from the database of the Beschlagnahmeinventar "Entartete Kunst", "Degenerate Art" Research Center, Freie Universität, Berlin (http://www.geschkult.fu-berlin.de/en/e/db_entart_kunst/index.html), EK no. 10215.
Lee M. Friedman Fund
© Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn.