Two Ladies and a Gentleman

Christian Rohlfs (1849 1938)

Date
ca. 1913
Medium
Tempera on canvas
Dimensions
Height: 77 cm
Width: 59.5 cm
Inscription
Initialed on lower right: CR
Inventory Number
1978.148
Acquisition
Purchased in 1978 with the support of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia

The painting “Two Ladies and a Gentleman” was inspired by the Dresden artists’ group "Brücke". Like Kirchner, Rohlfs was fascinated by the prostitutes and the men-about-town strolling in the bustling metropolis. In contrast to Kirchner, however, Rohlfs placed his figures close up to the viewer, thereby creating an intimate atmosphere. Rohlfs applied the paint with strikingly broad brusstrokes. He later scratched away part of it with a bristle brush to reveal the layers beneath it and set the picture oscillating. The heavy contours with their great expressive power are reminiscent of expressionist woodcuts, a medium that Rohlfs had also become acquainted with through the "Brücke"-artists.

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