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  • Paul Klee
    Dec 18, 1879 – Jun 29, 1940
  • Parklandschaft - Paul Klee was a Swiss painter of German nationality, whose personal, often gently humorous works are replete with allusions to dreams, music, and poetry. His highly individual style was influenced by movements in art that included expressionism, cubism, and surrealism. He was, as well, a student of orientalism.
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  • Parklandschaft

  • Paul Klee
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  • 1920

    'On some solemn night, Klee planted in the most secret of places the germ of his self-contained selfhood. From then on, all the threads that he had meant to spin turned into tender roots. And what he has since been able to draw out of his soul has become rootedness. He is said to have spent a solar year in Tunis. The plant shot up at once. Now it is putting forth flowers: his fiery watercolours. But the self is developing further: when Klee draws, new roots sprout forth: and colourful flowers emerge when he paints, poetry composed in colours' (Theodor D?ubler, 'das Kunstblatt', 1918, quoted in In Paul Klee's Enchanted Garden, exh. cat., Berne, 2008, p. 13).

    Parks and gardens were a central motif in Klee's art throughout his life, For Klee their patchwork construction or a variegated row of flowerbeds provided a rhythmic visual structure that offered a pictorial link for him between Nature, art and the hidden ordering forces of Nature and the cosmos, which he believed it was the purpose of art to reveal. 'Art relates to creation in the manner of a metaphor,' Klee wrote in his 'Creative Credo' written soon after he joined the Bauhaus in 1920. 'It is always a model, in the same way that the earth is a model of the cosmos' (Paul Klee, 'Creative Credo', 1920, in The Inward Vision: Watercolours, Drawings and Writings by Paul Klee, exh. cat., New York, 1959, pp. 5-10).

    Parklandschaft is an exquisite, fluid and richly coloured watercolour made by Klee during this same fertile period in the development of his art when he was attemping to integrate these beliefs into the practice of his art in accordance with the start of his teaching career at the Bauhaus. Depicting two linear rows of strangely different plant forms all rendered with a single flowing line meandering and looping in a seemingly continuous flow of ink from his pen, the painting articulates a mysteriously ordered world of varied organic form and burgeoning growth. Showing the roots below the soil as well as the flowering forms above, the flat colours and fluid outlines of this semi-abstract painting give pictorial expression to Klee's essentially mystic vision of the earth as a mirror of the cosmos and of art as the means by which an understanding of the integrated holistic unity of all things can be conveyed.

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Other paintings by Paul Klee:

Oriental Feast
Oriental Feast
Insula Dulcamara
Insula Dulcamara
Light-Broadening I
Light-Broadening I
Paul KleePaul Klee was born on December 18, 1879, in Munchenbuchsee, Switzerland, into a family of musicians. His childhood love of music was always to remain profoundly important in his life and work. From 1898 to 1901, Klee studied in Munich. Upon completing his schooling, he traveled to Italy in the first in a series of trips abroad that nourished his visual sensibilities. He settled in Bern in 1902. A series of his satirical etchings was exhibited at the Munich Secession in 1906. That same year, Klee married Lily Stumpf, a pianist, and moved to Munich. Here he gained exposure to Modern art.

Klee met Alexej Jawlensky, Vasily Kandinsky, August Macke, Franz Marc, and other avant-garde figures in 1911; he participated in important shows of advanced art in Munich and Berlin. In 1912, he visited Paris for the second time, where he saw the work of Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso and met Robert Delaunay. Klee helped found the Neue Munchner Secession in 1914. Color became central to his art only after a revelatory trip to Tunisia in 1914.

In 1920, a major Klee retrospective was held in Munich. Klee taught at the Bauhaus in Weimar from 1921 to 1926 and in Dessau from 1926 to 1931. During his tenure, he was in close contact with other Bauhaus masters, such as Kandinsky and Lyonel Feininger. In 1924, the Blaue Vier, consisting of Lyonel Feininger, Jawlensky, Kandinsky, and Klee, was founded. Among his notable exhibitions of this period were his first in the United States in 1924; his first major show in Paris the following year and an exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, in 1930. Klee went to Dusseldorf to teach at the Akademie in 1931, shortly before the Nazis closed the Bauhaus. Forced by the Nazis to leave his position in Dusseldorf in 1933, Klee settled in Bern the following year. Klee died on June 29, 1940, in Muralto-Locarno, Switzerland.