Happy Birthday Max Pechstein!! (and my good friend Teri Linhart) German Expressionist painter, born in 1881, was one of the founders of Die Brucke. Pechstein studied art formally in Dresden, began as a painter, but later became a printmaker, doing woodcuts as well as lithographs. Pechstein was fired from his professor position at Berlin Academy by the Nazis in 1933, but later regained that position with the fall of the Nazis in 1945. His painting borrowed heavily from Van Gogh and Matisse, but gradually became more primitive and incorporated heavy dark outlining. Below, see his most renowned work: Our Father Who Art in Heaven, depicting God reigning Supreme, in the clouds. The German phrases, Our Father, at the top, The Dubist (you are?), in the center and In the Sky, at the bottom. The "all seeing eye" in the center of the forehead is reminiscent of Egyptian practice. The heavy bold lines are quite primitive in this handpainted woodcut. Pechstein produced over 850 prints in his lifetime, including woodcuts, lithographs, and etchings.
Die Brucke or the Bridge (in English) was a group of German expressionists (1905-13) who chose the name to signify their desire to link with like minded artists. They were influenced by the Fauves, Van Gogh and Gauguin in particular. They were instrumental in renewing the woodcut and other graphic arts.