Lot 13
  • 13

George Grosz

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  • George Grosz

  • signed Grosz (lower right), signed Grosz and numbered 43 (lower left)
  • watercolour and pen and ink on paper


Eugene V. Thaw & Co., New York
Galerie Claude Bernard, Paris
Galerie Thomas Borgmann, Cologne
Konrad Mönter, Düsseldorf
Fischer Fine Art Ltd., London
Acquired from the above by the present owner


Milwaukee, Art Museum; Berlin, Berlinische Galerie, Museum für Moderne Kunst, Photographie und Architektur; Frankfurt-am-Main, Schirn Kunsthalle; Emden, Kunsthalle, Stiftung Henri Nannen; New York, The Jewish Museum; Omaha, Nebraska, Joslyn Art Museum and Atlanta, The High Museum, The Marvin and Janet Fishman Collection: Art in Germany 1909-1936, From Expressionism to Resistance, 1990-1992, no. 52
Mannheim, Städtische Kunsthalle, Neue Sachlichkeit - Figurative Malerei der 20er Jahre, 1995, illustrated in colour in the catalogue
The Hague, Museum Paleis Lange Voorhout; Stockholm, Liljevalchs Konsthall;  Helsinki, Helsingin Taidehalli and Brussels, Palais des Beaux-Arts, Art et Résistance, Les peintres allemandes de l'entre-deux-guerres - La Collection Marvin et Janet Fishman, 1995-1996, no. 53


Heiko Jörn, Ostfriesland Journal, October 1991, illustrated p. 79
Sanna Wikström, Gefle Dagblad, 12th December 1995, illustrated in colour p. 12
Dan Jönsson, Göteborgs Tidningen, Gotheberg, 2nd January 1996, illustrated p.5
Bertolt Brecht, Aamulehti, 1996, illustrated p. 20
Dan Sundell, Hufvudstbladet (Kultur section), 11th February 1996, illustrated in colour p. 18
Kunst & Cultuur, Antwerp, June 1996, illustrated in colour p. 1 and on the cover (detail)

Catalogue Note

Executed circa 1922, the present work relates to the sixteen watercolours that Grosz completed between 1915 and 1922 and published alongside numerous drawings in his collection of sardonic imagery, Ecce Homo.  While not published in that book, Orgie has all of the biting satirical elements and the combination of debauchery and sexual depravity that define the artist's best work from this period.

While the bald man slouched over the table in the foreground dribbles wine down his cheap suit, a woman to the left squats over a chamber pot.  On the right a semi-clad woman with blonde hair  and a cross-eyed man in blue caress, while the man at the table appears on the verge of pouring the rest of his bottle of wine over their ardour.  The whole scene typifies Grosz's mordant social satire and, despite its vibrant colours, epitomises the artist's gaze into the darker sides of life in Weimar Germany.