Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Hélène Mass (Maß), printmaker (VI)

O valleys wide, o heights, o beautiful green forest

thou attentive dwelling place of my joys and sorrows!

Outside, forever deceived, rages the busy world.

Embrace me for the last time with thy green ceiling.
Walter Leistikow, Märkische Landschaft
Abschied vom Walde.

O Täler weit, o Höhen, o schöner grüner Wald,

du meiner Lust und Wehen andächtger Aufenthalt!

Da draussen, stets betrogen, saust die geschäftge Welt,

schlag noch einmal die Bogen um mich, du grünes Zelt.

 Poem by Joseph Eichendorff (1788-1859) and Felix Mendelsohn-Bartholdy (1809-1849) wrote the music to the poem: Op.59, no.3

Painting above by Paul Vorgang (1860-1927). It's all coincidence of course but it is showing similar ideas very well and again how a really talented printmaker can "keep up" with a knife, with painting colleagues and friends with brushes, using such basic materials and technique.  

Maß frequently chose cottages for her prints and although the surrounding province had of course countless of such dwellings I understand her teacher Walter Leistikow owned a summer cottage in Denmark, his painting below.. 

And this print by Gertrud Fabian (I'd never heard of her before last week) changed hands just the other day. Sadly not into mine, can't win them all, but the lucky buyer may contact me anytime for exchanging propositions. Besides the cottage it shows some resemblance to the prints by Maß, colors, chestnut and shadows. In Berlin a "Fabian, frau Oberregierungsrat" (the wife of a Berlin official) was named as friend and member of the Berlin Women Artists Association (Verein der Berliner Künstlerinnen) in 1927. 

Well this posting concludes the series of postings on Hélène Maß, most of her prints were shown in juxtaposition with the works of her teachers, contemporaries, friends and colleagues. Occasionally new and before not seen prints show up in auctions: I'll try keeping readers informed. Let me know if you've enjoyed by leaving a comment. 

All pictures borrowed freely from the Internet for friendly and educational use only.


  1. The prints are all very lovely and I enjoyed reading about Helen Mass. My ignorance of the German alphabet had be guessing for years what the B stood for. Now if I can remember that it stands for ss, I'll be all right. Thank you, Gerrie.

    1. Hello Karen, thank you. Comments like this is what humble Bloggers thrive on. And although it is just simple web based research it is great fun comparing these prints with contemporary works of art. Instead of staring at them at the wall I mean, I've learned and broadened my horizon so much myself. Stay tuned: there' s more German works placed in their time to come soon.