• Franz Gertsch
    Frühling / Spring 2009-11
    Eitempera auf ungrundierter Baumwolle
    Tempera on unprimed cotton
    325 x 480 cm
    Besitz von / Collection of Franz Gertsch & Maria Gertsch-Meer
    © Franz Gertsch

Franz Gertsch. The Four Seasons

In 2007, the then 77-year-old Franz Gertsch began working on a cycle devoted to the four seasons, well aware of the fact that he would probably need about one year for each painting. This great undertaking has now been successfully completed; in early 2011 the artist concluded his magisterial “Four Seasons” cycle with the painting “Frühling” [Spring]. We at the museum franz Gertsch are pleased to present this monumental work together with “Herbst” [Autumn] (2007/08), “Sommer” [Summer] (2008/2009) and “Winter” (2009) for the first time in a single room.

Franz Gertsch invested all his abilities, his energy and time into these paintings. As a starting point for «Herbst», the artist made use of an already existing photograph from 1994 showing the woods behind his house. For the photographs on which he would base the other works, Gertsch followed the changes of the seasons while already at work on the cycle: «Sommer» is the summer of 2007, «Winter» is the winter of 2008, and «Frühling» is the spring of 2009. These paintings, which can doubtlessly be seen as the magnum opus of his late work, were thus made over the course of the seasons of four different years.

 

The presentation of the four seasons in one room demonstrates how the paintings harmonize in terms of color. Franz Gertsch restricts himself to a limited palette, to a few self-made hues made of earth and mineral pigments among others. While looking at the paintings of the seasons, the color tonalities of the individual paintings interlink, certain tones are taken up again from one painting to the next. The interplay between subject, painting style and color scheme, between perception and effect occurring in each work is heightened even further in the interaction between the pictures.

Franz Gertsch. The Four Seasons