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Max Oppenheimer

(called Mopp, 1885 Vienna – 1954 New York)

The Potsdamer Platz in Berlin. Dry-point on Japon. Signed and numbered 1/50. (1912). Stix/Osborn 1; Pabst 3.

The painter, printmaker and writer, Max Oppenheimer, was a prominent representative of the Viennese Expressionist school. A gifted portraitist, he painted many outstanding figures of his time, including Heinrich and Thomas Mann, Arnold Schönberg and Arthur Schnitzler. From 1911 to 1915 he lived and worked in Berlin. The Potsdamer Platz is one of his first etchings and, despite its creation at an early point in his career, is regarded as one of his most successful and artistically convincing works. Oppenheim conveys the hustle and bustle of city life with great vigour. The scene vibrates with pulsating activity. Countless passers-by are hurrying across the square and the piercing noise of trams, buses, cars and hackney carriages is almost audible. The electric wires of the overhead tram lines and street lamps and the thin branches of the trees in winter form an ornamental, filigree pattern that gives the depiction a lively rhythm. The result is an astonishingly evocative and expressive portrayal of modern life in a metropolis.

The present sheet is the first impression of this etching. The print is therefore superlatively fresh, harmonious and rich. The etching, published by Verlag Fritz Gurlitt, is rare. Printed on the full sheet. In perfect condition.

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