Oskar Kokoschka (German, 1886-1980)
How Tired my Horse Must Feel After All the Work To-day!
Dedicated, titled, and initialed "For my kind Susan...OK" in pencil u.c.
Graphite on paper, sheet size 8 3/4 x 11 3/4 in (22.2 x 29.9 cm), framed.
Condition: Paper tape hinged to backing mat, mat burn, toning.
Provenance: Property from the Collection of James Sachs Plaut (1912-1996), founder and first director of the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston. During World War II, Plaut directed the Art Looting Investigation Unit for the United States Government, the group known as the "Monuments Men."
N.B. The present work was dedicated to Plaut's daughter Susan (called Sukie), during a weeklong stay by Kokoschka at the Plaut home on Brattle Street in Cambridge, circa 1949. During this time, Kokoschka was on an intensive lecture and meeting circuit, and for Sukie, the horse was directly expressive. She recalls Kokoschka returning home one evening after giving a lecture at the ICA Boston: "…Being a little kid, I didn't know how tired he was…and I said, 'Draw me a horse!'…and he drew this horse looking like it was about to die... And he said 'That's how I feel.' And I said, 'Really?' And it is exactly how he felt…it's a very tired horse."
Plaut had connections to many European artists in the 1950s resulting from his work as one of the Monuments Men, and invited many of them to exhibit at the ICA Boston under his directorship.
The work will be included in the third edition of the forthcoming Kokoschka catalogue raisonné of drawings and watercolors; we wish to thank Dr. Alfred Weidinger for his kind assistance with cataloging the lot.
There are genlty presses creases to the lower right corner (they do not affect the image). The toning is even, and the mat burn is subtle.
The absence of a condition statement does not imply that the lot is in perfect condition or completely free from wear and tear, imperfections or the effects of aging. Condition requests can be obtained via email (lot inquiry button) or by telephone to the appropriate gallery location (Boston/617.350.5400 or Marlborough/508.970.3000). Any condition statement given, as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Skinner Inc. shall have no responsibility for any error or omission.