Townhall square
Teltow, 1

Lyonel Feininger

Townhall square

Woodcut on wove paper
8 3/8 x 6 5/8 inches (21,2 x 16,7 cm)

One of only 5 known prints on a larger landscape format sheet.
Feininger describes the print on one of the five prints as "rare print, block destroyed".

The woodcut is one of the works that emerged during the extremely fruitful and important creative period of the artist during his trip to the Harz Mountains in 1918. In 1917 and 1918 Feininger traveled to the Harz Mountains in the vicinity of Braunlage, explored the delightful mountain and forest landscape there and - as always - went on an intensive search for motifs.
Armed with a pencil, he notes numerous villages, churches, forest landscapes and buildings there. A drawing from July 1918 probably shows the manor house of the Röhrig glassworks, which is very similar to the building on the woodcut "Town Hall (with an assembly in the foreground)" from 1918.
This woodcut in turn is a motif variation of our "Rathausplatz" from the same year.

Lyonel Feininger

Teltow, 1

Etching on wove paper
7 1/8 x 9 1/4 inches (17,9 x 23,6 cm)

The printing plate was brought to Paris in the early 1950s, where it was cleaned of any signs of oxidation. Subsequently, a small edition of 25 copies was printed for the artist, which also includes our perfectly preserved sheet.

The etching is a reinterpretation of the unfortunately lost version in oil from 1912: "I commenced an etching last night [...] of the church of Teltow after the same composition as the oil [...]." (See WVZ).
The technique of etching presents the artist with a very special challenge. With “Teltow, 1” he achieved a masterpiece. In contrast to drawings and woodcuts, his etching is filigree, rich in nuances, full of transparency and flooded with light. Here, too, reality is distorted in favor of expressive expression. The artist himself makes clear how novel and significant Feininger's work is: “I have finished the etching of Teltow church, have washed it off and it looks promising. I think I have started on a new line of works with this one, no amalgamation, pure graphic without picturesque addition [...] ".

Über Lyonel Feininger

Born: 1871 in New York
Died: 1956 in New York