Professor Ludwig Karl Strauch, Vienna Mrs. Ludwig Karl Strauch, Vienna (by descent from the above) Private Collection (acquired from the above) Sale: Sotheby's, London, March 30, 1988, lot 322 Acquired at the above sale
Jane Kallir, Egon Schiele: The Complete Works, New York, 1998, no. 54, illustrated p. 353
This tranquil still life was executed shortly after Schiele had enrolled at Vienna’s prestigious Akademie der bildenden Künste. At just sixteen, Schiele was the youngest student at the Akademie, and his work from this time, such as this still life of a moneyplant branch in a vase, is very different from the aesthetic with which he is typically associated. He was a prolific landscape and nature painter, and his early work suggests a young man enamored with the natural world. The patterned textile under the vase, typical of the Vienna Seccession, and its sinuous contour hint at the aesthetic that would come to shape the young artist's oeuvre. While Schiele’s output at this time was largely conventional, this virtuoso gouache, one of his "masterpieces of verisimilitude" is a striking evidence of Schiele’s natural brilliance (Jane Kallir, Egon Schiele: The Complete Works, London, 1990, p. 36).
The sheet has been adhered to a supporting board at several places on its verso. The sheet is undulating. The medium is bright and fresh. There are a couple minor stains in the upper right quadrant and lower right quadrant, possibly inherent to the medium. There is a flattened crease in the upper left corner with associated minor losses, and a extremely minor repaired tear in the lower right corner. There is a two-inch crease associated with the undulation of the paper, extending from the center of the right edge. The work is in overall good condition. In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective qualified opinion. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING CONDITION OF A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE PRINTED IN THE CATALOGUE.