Erik Nitsche: Oskar Kokoschka
Artist: Erik Nitsche
Capable of working in a broad range of media, Oskar Kokoschka was a leader of the Figurative/Expressionist school. His early landscapes and still lifes evoke a hallucinative, expressive power. His compositions were religiously symbolic rather than representative. In 1910, his friend, architect Adolf Loos, sponsored his first trip abroad. Kokoschka journeyed to Switzerland and Berlin. He painted extensively during his travels and supplied a regular "portrait of the week" for the periodical Der Strum . By the dawn of World War I, he was respected in the art circles of Germany and Austria. Drafted during the war, he was wounded on the Russian front in 1916 and was hospitalized in Dresden. He became a professor at the Academy of Arts there in 1919 and remained in Dresden until 1924. Kokoschka then began a series of journeys which lasted until 1931. He painted the people, landscapes and great cities of nearly every country in Europe and North Africa. In his landscape works, he used impressionist techniques interpreted in a highly personal and dramatically effective manner. Kokoschka continued to roam throughout Europe before emigrating to London in 1938. After the war, he settled in Villeneuve on Lake Geneva where he founded his "School for Seeing" to counteract the spread of abstract art. Kokoschka remained active well into his eighties.
This painting was originally published on the Fleetwood® First Day Cover for the Germany 80pf Oskar Kokoschka stamp issued February 13, 1986.
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