noldeconversationEmil Nolde (1867-1956), Unterhaltung (Conversation), etching, 1906, signed and dated in pencil lower right and also signed by the printer Otto Felsing lower left. Reference: Gustav Schiefler 37, fourth state (of 4). A proof apart from the edition of only 20 and “some proofs” (Schiefler says: “einige probedrucke”) of this state. In excellent condition, on a heavy laid handmade paper with the (partial) watermark “V”, the full sheet with deckle edges, 6 x 7 1/2, the sheet 21 1/2 x 15 inches.

A fine exceptionally fresh impression of this superb composition, printed in a rich dark blue/green ink.

According to Schiefler only 5 proofs were made of earlier states, and the composition was essentially complete in the first state; the succeeding work consisted of brightening the tone of the sky, heightening the contrast of sky and sitters, and clarifying the imagery.

This is an early print  for Nolde (he became an artist at a rather late age), and was made in the year things started to work for him – in 1906 he was invited to join the Brucke in Dresden, his painting Erntetag caused a sensation at the Berlin Secession in the spring, and he met some of his most important patrons including Schiefler. He made a good number of etchings in this period, from 1904 to 1911, then another group in 1918 an 1922; there are hardly any after 1926.