Description & Technical information

A cheap basement-flat in all its slimy detail, the coarse, dulled trio round the table with cards and drink, afterplay of a sex killing which will only come to be revealed after closer investigation. Hatchet and straight-razor on the floor, spats of blood on the trouser leg of a grinning murderer sitting on the female corpse, the corpse that – barely concealed – is pulled along up to the table. The extreme brutality and indifference exuding from this scene, supercedes tabloid sensationalism. The loss of all values is the final stage of a purely greed-driven society, despite all the fine midddle-class shine. Ecce homo. Black humour and effective provocation, the nightmare envisioned with sobriety and precision. ‘The catastrophy had begun … I drew drunks, men vomiting, men with clenched fists cursing the moon, sex murderers playing cards sitting on a wooden chest inside which one can see the murdered woman. I drew wine boozers, beer boozers, gin boozers, and a frightened-looking man washing his hands sticky with blood … I drew little men fleeing, lonely and demented, through empty streets…’ (A Little Yes and a Big No: The Autobiography of George Grosz, 1946)

Date:  1917
Period:  20th century
Origin:  Germany
Medium: Pen, Ink on paper
Signature: Signed and dated lower right: Grosz 1917

Dimensions: 25.3 x 33.3 cm (10 x 13¹/₈ inches)
Provenance: George Grosz Estate
Literature: George Grosz, Ecce Homo, Berlin, 1923 (and several facsimile reprints), p.97, ill.
George Grosz, A Little Yes and a Big No, New York, 1946, p.97, ill. ;
1954, p.10, ill.
Herbert Brittner, George Grosz, New York, 1960, p.10, ill.; Köln, 1961, p.10, ill.
Hans Hess, George Grosz, London, 1974, ill.39
Uwe M. Schneede, George Grosz. Der Künstler in seiner Gesellschaft, Köln, 1975, ill. 25
Uwe M. Schneede, George Grosz His Life and Work, London, 1979, ill. 76
Serge Sabarsky, George Grosz. Gli anni di Berlino/Die Berliner Jahre, 1985, ill.52 (Also English and French editions)
Exhibitions: Akademie der Künste, Berlin, 1962, George Grosz, No.156, full-page ill. p. 39
Travelling exhibition George Grosz.
Gli anni di Berlino/Die Berliner Jahre
Palazzo Reale, Milano,May 30-July 28, 1985
Palazzo dei Diamanti, Ferrara,August 3-September 29, 1985
Museum Moderne Kunst,Wien,December 12,1985-January 31, 1986
Accademia di Belle Arti, Napoli, February 26-April 13, 1986
Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg, April 26-June 8, 1986
Museum Villa Stück, München, September 3- October 26, 1986
Staatliche Kunsthalle, Berlin, March 13-April 15, 1987
Kestner Gesellschaft,Hannover,November 27,1987-January 24,1988
Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris, October 5, 2005-January 9, 2006,
Dada, ill.
Categories: Paintings, Drawings & Prints