‘Mädchenakt’ (‘Female Nude’)
Displayed at the Great German Art Exhibition in 1941, room 29.
Single unique cast (with the core still inside), see X-ray photos below.
Depicted in ‘Die Kunst im Deutschen Reich’, 1941, and in ‘Nationalsozialistische Monatshefte’, 1941, Heft 138.
Left: ‘Mädchenakt’ by Hermann Kissenkoetter. GDK 1941 room 29. Depicted in ‘Nationalsozialistische Monatshefte’, 1941, Heft 138.
Right: ‘Mädchenakt’ depicted in ‘Die Kunst im Deutschen Reich’, 1941, page 328.
Direct Lost-Wax Casting – the Single Unique Cast
In the direct lost-wax casting process (also named ‘cire perdue’), the sculptor begins by building a roughly modelled clay-core over a metal armature. The clay-core is baked to harden it and drive off moisture, and then a relatively thin layer of wax is applied that receives the detailing of anatomy, texture, facial features and signature. A mold is formed around the wax-model, when the mold is heated the wax melts and creates a space into which molten bronze is poured. Once the bronze is cast, the clay-core and armature can be removed to lessen the weight of the finished sculpture. Occasionally the core and armature rods are -in whole or in part- left inside the bronze. On sculptures meant to be placed outdoors, the clay-core and iron-armature are generally removed in order to avoid damage from absorption of water.
The direct lost wax technique allows the artist to cast directly off of the original model, and is ideal for wax models with complex surface textures as well as large and complex compositions. This casting method produces a Single Unique Cast from a Single Model (as opposed to one that is cast from a mold of an existing model). The original master model is lost in the casting process: producing more copies of the master model is impossible.
When X-ray photos show iron armature or internal frame inside the bronze, it is evident that the direct lost wax casting technique was used and that we have to do with the original cast/model.
X-ray photo of ‘Mädchenakt’. Clearly visible are the several iron wires from the core inside.
|– condition||: II|
|– size||: height 57 cm|
|– signed||: signed 1940, with monogram of Hermann Kissenkötter|
|– type||: bronze. Unique model.|
|– misc.||: with foundry mark ‘Priessmann Bauer & Co. München’|
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BIOGRAPHY: HERMANN KISSENKOETTER
Hermann Kissenkoetter, ‘Tympanonrelief’, Münster
At the top of the city of Münster’s Hautklinik at 56-58 Esmarchstrasse is a Nazi eagle with the Caduceus replacing the swastika. The relief itself dates from 1937/ 1938 and the warriors on the Tympanonrelief created by Hermann Kissenkoetter now lack their weapons. Münster had always been an important garrison town since the 19th century (in 1938 there were approximately 8,000 soldiers stationed in Münster). The Hautkliniek (the university clinic for skin diseases) was originally a military hospital, built in 1863 and rebuilt in 1938. From 1945 to 1998 it served as a British military hospital.
Hermann Kissenkoetter, ‘Adler Denkmal in Münster, or ‘Ehrenmal Königlich Preußisches 4. Lothringer Feldartillerie-Regiment Nr. 70‘; ‘Eagle Memorial’ in the city of Münster’, or ‘Memorial of the Royal Prussian Artillery-Regiment Nr. 70’. Depicted is an eagle defending the last canon. The Royal Prussian 4th Lorraine Artillery-Regiment Nr. 70’, located in Metz, fought in Verdun and Cambrai. The memorial was revealed at 16 June 1930.
Hermann Kissenkoetter, ‘Führerbüste’. Bronze, height 42 cm. Foundry ‘Priessmann Bauer & Co. München’.
Hermann Kissenkoetter, ‘Hans-Joachim Marseille’ (1919 – 1942). Messerschmit pilot Marseille, ‘The Star of Africa’, was one of the most successful German fighter pilots during WWII. With 158 victories he earned the Ritterkreuz mit Eichenlaub, Schwertern und Brillanten (Knight’s Cross with Oak Leaves, Swords, and Diamonds). Offered in 2019 by an art gallery in the USA.
Hermann Kissenkoetter, ‘Hochofenarbeiter’ (‘Blast furnace worker’). Displayed at the Westfälische Kunstausttellung in Dortmund, 1941.
Hermann Kissenkoetter,‘Lettische Bäuerin’ (‘Farmer wife from Latvia’). Displayed at the Exhibition ‘Das Junge Rheinland’ in the Städtischen Kunsthalle in Düsseldorf, 1928.
Hermann Kissenkoetter, ‘Head of a Hochofenarbeiter’ (‘Head of a blast furnace worker’), depicted in Mortimer G. Davidson, Kunst im Deutschland, 1933 – 1945.
Hermann Kissenkoetter (1897–1957) born in Münster, was a German sculptor. From 1927 on he was a member of the Freien Künstlergemeinschaft (artist association) ‘Schanze’ in Münster. Kissenkoetter was represented with ‘Lettische Bäuerin’ (‘Farmer wife from Latvia’) at the exhibition ‘Das Junge Rheinland’ in the Städtischen Kunstahlle in Düsseldorf, 1928. Two years later, in 1930, he created the ‘Adler Denkmal in the city of Münster’, a memorial for the Royal Prussian Artillery-Regiment Nr. 70’; depicted is an eagle defending the last canon; the Royal Prussian 4th Lorraine Artillery-Regiment Nr. 70’, located in Metz, fought in Verdun and Cambrai (the memorial is still existing).
In 1933 Kissenkoetter created the ‘Siegener Kreuzweg’, consisting of around 14 ‘Kreuzwegstationen’ (stations of the cross) at the pilgrimage hermitage in Siegen. In 1937 he took part in the exhibition ‘Westfalens Beitrag zur Deutschen Kunst der Gegenwart’, organised by the ‘Landesmuseum der Provinz Westfalen für Kunst und Kulturgeschichte Münster’ in Haus Rothenburg. A year later Kissenkoetter finished the Tympanonrelief at the top of the city of Münster’s Hauptklinik at 56-58 Esmarchstrasse (see pictures above).
At the Great German Art Exhibition in 1941 he displayed the sculpture ‘Mädchenakt’ (‘Female Nude’) in room 29. Kissenkoetter was also represented at the Westfälische Kunstausttellung in Dortmund, 1941. During these years he also created the bust of Ritterkreuzträger Hans-Joachim Marseille, ‘The Star of Africa’ and Führer busts. Kissenkoetter had his ateliers in Münster, Düsseldorf and Angelmodde (near Münster). In 2007 a street in Angelmodde (the ‘Kissenkötterweg’) was named after the sculptor and member of the Freien Künstlergemeinschaft Schanze Hermann Kissenkoetter. Hermann Kissenkoetter died in 1957 in Angelmodde.