Depicted is ‘Forte di San Giorgio’, or ‘Fortress of St. George’ or ‘Kastell Capraja’ in Italy.
– displayed at the Grosse Berliner Kunstaustellung, 1914;
– displayed at the Grosse Münchener Kunstausttellung in the Glaspalast, 1918;
– depicted in ‘Münchner Künstler Köpfe’, 1937, page 287.
Monumental painting of 196 x 168 cm, created in 1913.
Depicted in the official exhibition catalogue of the ‘Grosse Münchener Kunstausstellung’ 1918 in the Glaspalast, page 18.
Described in the official exhibition catalogue of the ‘Grosse Berliner Kunstausstellung’ 1914, second edition, under the name ‘Ruin’. A sticker on the back of the painting reads ‘Grosse Berliner Kunstausstellung 1914’.
Hermann Urban, ‘Epos’ depicted in the official exhibition catalogue of the ‘Grosse Münchener Kunstausstellung’, 1918 in the Glaspalast, page 18.
The sticker on the back, reading ‘Grosse Berliner Kunstaustellung’, 1914′.
Hermann Urbann, ‘Epos’. Depicted in ‘Münchner Künstler Köpfe’, 1937, page 287 (a later, second version of ‘Epos’ was displayed at the Grosse Münchener Kunstausstellung 1938, Maximilianeum, under the name ‘Kastell Capraja’).
Depicted is the ‘Forte di San Giorgio’, or ‘Fortress of St. George’ (or ‘Kastell Capraja’). The fortress is located on the Island of Capraia, one of the seven islands of the Tuscan Archipelago. The castle was built in 1540 by Genoese, after the destruction by the corsair Dragut of the existing settlement, based on a Pisan fortress of the XII century. From 1892 to 1894 Hermann Urban travelled to Italy, were he studied under Arnold Böcklin in Florence. The Island of Capraia is relatively close to Florence and it is quite likely that Urban visited the fortress in this period.
Forte di San Giorgio, 2013.
|– condition||: II|
|– size||: 198, x 168, unframed 186 x 156 cm|
|– signed||: right under and on the back (on the back also ‘Epos 2250’).|
|– type||: oil on canvas. Created in 1913.|
|– misc.||: Sticker on the back: ‘Grosse Berliner Kunstaustellung 1914’|
Hermann Urban, ‘Astura, -Konradins letzes Gefängnis‘ (‘Torre Astura, -last prison of Conrad’). Displayed at the exhibition ‘Jubiläums-Ausstellung der Münchener Künstler-Genossenschaft zu Ehren des 90. Geburtstages Sr. Kgl. Hoheit des Prinz Regenten Luitpold von Bayern, München, Kgl. Glaspalast, München, 1911.
Conrad (1252 – 1268), or Conradin (German: Konradin) was the Duke of Swabia, King of Jerusalem and King of Sicily. He was born in Wolfstein, Bavaria, to Conrad IV of Germany and Elisabeth of Wittelsbach. He is sometimes known as Conrad V of Germany. Though he never succeeded his father in Germany, he was recognized as king of the Germans, Sicily, and Jerusalem by German supporters of the Hohenstaufens in 1254. In 1286 Conrad was imprisoned in Torre Astura by Charles of Anjou; he was tried as a traitor and on 29 October 1268 he was beheaded.
Torre Astura, formerly an island called by the ancients merely Astura, is now a peninsula in the comune of Nettuno, on the coast of Latium, Italy, at the southeast extremity of the Bay of Antium, on the road to Circeii. The name also belongs to the medieval coastal tower in the same site, as well as to the river which rises at the southern foot of the Alban Hills.
Left: ‘Astura’ depicted in the exhibition catalogue.
Right: ‘Astura’ in the year 2016.
Hermann Uban, ‘Nach den Regen’ (‘After the Rain‘). GDK 1940, room 6. Bought by Hitler for 2.000 RM. In the possession of Deutsche Historisches Museum, Berlin. Depicted in ‘Die Kunst im Deutschen Reich‘, 1941. Size 127 x 110 cm.
Hermann Urban, ‘Bergnest’ (‘Mountain-fortress’). GDK 1944, room 39. Bought by Hitler for 5.000 RM. In the possession of the Deutsches Historisches Museum, Berlin. Size 126 x 110 cm.
Left: Hermann Urban, ‘Stille Bucht’ (‘Soundless Lagoon’). GDK 1941, room 24. Bought by Hitler for 3.000 RM. Depicted in ‘Die Kunst im Deutschen Reich’, 1941 and in ‘Die Kunst’, December, 1941. Also printed on postcards.
Right: Hermann Urban, ‘Spätherbst’ (‘Late-autumn’). Displayed at the Münchener Kunstausstellung, 1939, Maximilianeum; depicted in the exhibition catalogue. Also displayed under the name ‘Spätherbst in Italien’ at the ‘Münchner Kunstausstellung Danzig’, 1941; again depicted in the exhibition catalogue. Also dipected in ‘Die Kunst im Deutschen Reich’, 1939, page 166 and again in 1941, page 199.
Hermann Urban in the New Reich Chancellery
Hermann Urban, ‘Apulische Küste’ ( ‘Apulian coast’). GDK 1938 room 31. Bought by Hitler for 2.500 Reichsmark and placed in the Neue Reichszkanzlei (‘für die Inneneinrichtung des Erweiterungsbaues der Reichskanzlei’). The painting is on the 144-List, see below.
The ‘144- list’ with 144 paintings, sculptures and graphic works which were bought by Hitler in 1938; they were transported to Berlin and placed in the Neue Reichskanzlei under construction, which was completed in January 1939. The list of 144 works is not exhaustive. Hitler did buy more works at the GDK in 1938, and in later years, which were also placed in the Reichskanzlei.
At page 9 is listed ‘Apuluische Küste’ by Hermann Urban, München.
What happened to the art Hitler purchased at the Great German Art Exhibitions?
With his insatiable passion for collecting art, Hitler was the most important purchaser of works from the GDKs. Every year, several times, he visited the Haus der Deustchen Kunst. From 1937 to 1944 he bought in total 1316 works at the GDKs.
Hitler’s mass art purchases were mostly undertaken without a plan regarding the future location of the works. He only had a specific usage in mind from the start for a few of these works of art. The majority of the paintings and sculptures acquired at the GDKs faced an uncertain future. They were stored at the Haus der Deutschen Kunst until further notice (some were eventually taken to the Führerbau).
Below we describe the fate of a limited number of artworks which were – as an exception- given a special destination by Hitler:
1. 144 paintings, sculptures and graphic works were bought by Hitler in 1938; they were transported to Berlin and placed in the Neue Reichskanzlei under construction, which was completed in January 1939. The list of 144 works (in our possession) is not exhaustive. Hitler did buy more works at the GDK in 1938, and in later years, which were also placed in the Reichskanzlei.
2. In 1939 Hitler gave 10 works of art to the Jagdmuseum in Munich: works by Carl von Dombroswki, Ludwig Eugen, Felix Kupsch, Friedrich Reimann (5), Karl Wagner and Renz Waller.
3. A few pieces were used to decorate Hitler’s various offices and private residences; for example, Adolf Ziegler’s ‘Die Vier Elemente’ was famously placed over the fireplace in a salon of the Führerbau in Munich.
4. In April 1943 Hitler had 21 paintings from the GDK delivered to his Munich apartment in the Prinzregentenstrasse. This delivery included works by Anton Müller-Wischin, Franz Xaver Wolf, Freidrich Schüz, Hermann Urban, Ludwig Platzöder, Sep Happ and Sepp Meindl.
5. In 1939 Hitler bought two works, explicitly meant for his own personal use: ‘Beethoven’ by Josef Jurutka and ‘Bauernkrieg’ by Franz Xavier Wolf.
Left: Hermann Urban, ‘Am Tiber’ (‘At the Tiber’). GDK 1941, room 24. Bought by Hitler for 3.000 RM. Depicted in ‘Die Kunst im Deutschen Reich’, 1941 and on postcards. Size 157 x 136 cm.
Right: Hermann Urban, ‘Vulkanische Küste’ (‘Vulcano-coast’). GDK 1940, room 6.
Left: Hermann Urban, ‘Piratennest‘ (‘Pirate-fortress)‘, 123 x 107 cm. GDK 1942 room 6, bought by Hitler for 2.800 Reichsmark.
Right: Hermann Urban, ‘Am Liris’ (‘At the Liris’), 132 x 116 cm. GDK 1941 room 23, bought by Hitler for 2.000 Reichsmark.
Hermann Urban, ‘Am Tiber’. Depicted in ‘Deutsche Kunst der Gegenwart’, Breslau, 1943.
Left: Hermann Urban, ‘Spätsommer’ (‘Late-summer’). Displayed at the Grosse Münchener Kunstausstellung in the Glaspalast, 1927.
Right: Hermann Urbann, ‘Erdendrama’ (‘Drama of the Earth’). Displayed at the Grosse Münchener Kunstausstellung in the Glaspalast, 1919.
Hermann Urban, ‘Lago di Nemi’. Displayed at the ‘Internationalen Kunstausstellung im Kgl. Glaspalaste zu München’, 1897; depicted in the official exhibition katalogue.
Left: Hermann Urban, ‘Morgenstille’ (‘Silence in the Morning’). Displayed at the Grosse Münchener Kunstausstellung in the Glaspalast, 1928.
Right: Hermann Urban, ‘Spätherbst’ (‘Late Autumn’). Displayed at the Grosse Münchener Kunstausstellung in the Glaspalast, 1930.
Hermann Urban, Opus 669, 1904. Sold in 2006 at auctionhaus Zeller.
Left Hermann Urban, ‘Ruinen‘ (‘Ruins‘). Depicted in ‘Deutsche Kunst und Dekoration‘, april- september 1906.
Right: Hermann Urban, ‘Eintagsschnee‘ (‘Ond Day Snow‘). Depicted in ‘Deutsche Kunst und Dekoration‘, april-september 1906.
Another version of ‘Eintagsschnee’, displayed at the exhibition ‘Internationale Kunstausstellung Dresden’, 1901; depicted in the exhibition catalogue.
Left: Hermann Urban, ‘Herbstmorgen‘ (‘Autumn-morning‘). Displayed at the Internationale Kunstausstellung im Glaspalast zu München, 1904. Size 246 x 189 cm.
Right: ‘Herbstmorgen’ sold by a German auction house in 2003.
Left: Hermann Urban, ‘Stille Bucht’ (‘Silent Bay’). Displayed at the ‘Münchener Kunst-Ausstellung’, 1917, Glaspalast. Depicted in the official exhibition catalogue.
Right:Hermann Urban‚ ‘Einsamkeit‘ (‘Desolation‘). Displayed at the Internationale Kunstausstellung im Glaspalast zu München, 1901.
Hermann Urban ‘Am Tiber’. Displayed at the ‘Münchener Kunstausstellung’, Kunstpalast Düsseldorf, 1932; depicted in the exhibition catalog.
Left: Hermann Urban, ‘Nach dem Regen‘ (‘After the Rain‘). Displayed at the ‘Münchener Künstler Ausstellung‘, in der Preussischen Akademie der Künste, Berlin, 1935. Depicted in the exhibition catalog.
Right: Hermann Urban, ‘Pontinischer Morgen’ (‘Morning in Pontinia’). Displayed at the exhibition ‘Italienbilder deutscher Künstler in Berlin’. Depicted in ‘Nationalsozialistische Monatshefte’, 1941, Heft 140, and in ‘Die Kunst im Deutschen Reich’, 1941.
Left: Hermann Urban (right on the photo) in front of one of his works at an exhibition in 1900.
Right: Hermann Urban, drawn by Ernst Liebermann, 1936.
Hermann Urban, ‘Meister der heroischen Landschaft’
Paul Schultze-Naumburg published a nine-page special about Hermann Urban, ‘The Master of the Heroic Landscape’, in ‘Die Kunst im deutschen Reich, 1941’. Urban’s work was explaned by Naumburg as the artistic battle against the barbaric world. ‘His landscapes showes that all of life is a battle…. Those who do not take up the battle will be trampled underfoot…. Nature shows us that all that is living can only stay alive by fighting..War is the father of everything…’.
Herman Urban, the master of heroic landscapes
Hermann Urban (1866–1948) born in New Orleans (USA), was the son of the famous opera vocalist Alice Fleury and a German veterinarian. In 1825% he moved to Bad Aibling, where he grew up with his grandparents in the Sonnenstraße. Wilhelm Leibl, a friend of the family, encouraged Urban to go to the Munich Art Academy, where he studied from 1985 onwards under Joann Casar Herterich and Wilhelm von Diez. Urban had his first atelier in 1886 in the Amalienstraße in Munich (in 1890 Franz von Lenbach visited Urban in this atelier). Later he moved to the Nymphenburger Straße, where at least five Princesses and two Princes visited his atelier. From 1892 to 1894 he travelled to Italy, where he studied under Arnold Böcklin in Florence. Urban was a founding member of the Luitpoldgruppe. He worked for a certain period at the magazine ‘Die Jugend’. In the beginning his style could be described as ‘Jugenstiel’ but later he leaned more toward French Impressionism. His specialty: Italian landscapes, heroic landscapes, like the lake-basin of Nemi, the coasts of Anzio and Elba, the rocks of Ponza, the Pontine marshes with their ruins ans the islands Monte-Christo, Capria and Ischia.
At the end of the century he won the Golden Medal of the International Art Exhibitions in Dresden and in Munich. In 1901 Urban took part in the exhibition ‘Internationale Kunstausstellung Dresden’; his ‘Eintagsschnee’ (‘Ond day Snow’) was depicted in the exhibition catalogue. In 1908 Urban was granted the title Professor by ‘Prinzregent Luitpold’. In 1914 he travelled through Egypt. In 1916 he was awarded the ‘König-Ludwig-Kreuz für Heimatverdienste’; in the same year he became chairman of the ‘Künstlerrat’ in Munich. Also in 1916, he held a travelling exhibition with 53 paintings throughout Germany. In the first three decades of the 20th century, numerous works by Urban were displayed in the Grosse Münchener Kunstausstellung in the Glaspalast in Munich, as well as in several other cities in Europe. In 1924, for example, he took part at the XIV Biennale in Venice with ‘Sole bavarese’ (‘Bavarian Sun’), a work witch was bought by the King of Italy, Victor Emaneul III. In 1926 he was represented at the XV Biennale in Venice with ‘Gallo spennato’ (‘Plucked Cock’) and ‘Paesaggio'(‘Landscape’).
Later the Nazis were very fond of his works, although Urban never painted any war- or Nazi-related symbols or subjects. In the Great German Art Exhibitions Urban was represented with 27 works, of which 10 were bought by Hitler, including the work ‘Apulische Kuste’ which was placed in the Neue Reichszkanzlei (‘für die Inneneinrichtung des Erweiterungsbaues der Reichskanzlei’). The painting is on the ‘144-List’. Apperently the work ‘Einsamkeit’ also hung in the New Chancellery in Berlin.
In 1943 Hitler had 21 paintings from the Great German Art Exhibition delivered to his Munich apartment on Prinzregentestrasse. It is fair to assume that these works, which mainly comprised landscapes and still lifes by painters such as Anton Müller-Wischin, Franz Xaver Wolf, Friedrich Schüz, Herman Urban, Sepp Happ, Sepp Meindl, Willy ter Hell and Ludwig Platzöder, were his personal favourites. Besides Hitler, seven other high-ranking Nazi officials bought works of Hermann Urban at the Great German Art Exhibitions. On 12 July 1944 Hermann Urban’s atelier in the Kazmairstrasse in Munich was bombed; many of his works were destroyed, and more than 40 were stolen. Shortly thereafter he moved back to Bad Aibling. In 1945 he founded the ‘Künstlerstammtisch’ in Bad Aiblinger’s Café Rupp together with Sepp Hilz, Hans Müller-Schnuttenbach and other artists.
Hermann Urban died in 1948 in Bad Aibling.
During his life he created more than 4368 works. Around 2377 were destroyed by the fire in the Glaspalast (1931), by bombing in World War II (his atelier, galleries and the Maximilianeum) and by himself, when he was unsatisfied with the quality of his work.
Paintings by Urban in the possession of Deutsches Historisches Museum are: Spätsommer‘ (‘Late-summer‘, GDK 1941, bought by Hitler for 2.000 Reichsmark), Römischer Herbst‘ (‘Roman Autumn‘), ‘Piratennest‘ (‘Pirate-fortress‘, GDK 1942, bought by Hitler for 2.800 Reichsmark), ‘Bergnest’ (‘Mountain-fortress’, GDK 1944, bought by Hitler for 5.000 Reichsmark, ‘Am Liris’ (‘At the Liris’, GDK 1941, bought by Hitler for 2.000 Reichsmark), ‘Nach dem Regen’ (‘After the Rain’, GDK 1940, bought by Hitler for 2.000 Reichsmark), ‘Am Tiber‘ (‘At the Tiber‘, GDK 1941, bought by Hitler for 3.000 Reichsmark) and ‘Einsamkeit’ or ‘Felsenburg’ (‘Desolation’), GDK 1940, bought by Hitler for 3000 Reichsmark). The Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen holds: ‘Am Trasimenersee‘ (‘at Lake Trasimeno‘, GDK 1939), ‘Capreia’ (‘Island of Capraia’), ‘Italienische Landschaft’, ‘Römischer Herbst‘, ‘Römischer Spätsommer‘ (GDK 1939), ‘Sommertag’ and ‘Südliche Landschaft’.
In 2005 and 2014 the village Bad Aibling, which has a large collection of Urban’s works, organized exhibitions of Hermann Urban. In 2012 the Inselgalerie Gailer, Frauenchiemsee, organised a sonder-exhibition of Hermann Urban, who is considered one of the most important German painters in the first half of the 20st century.