Heckel nació en Dobeln (Sajonia). Como otros miembros del grupo Die Brücke conectó con la obra de Edward Munch, y su trabajo es un «puente» entre la pintura alemana neorromántica y la “moderna” pintura expresionista. Los cuatro miembros fundadores usaron la técnica de impresión al ser un medio barato y rápido de producir arte al alcance de todos. Le gustaba realizar muchos de sus grabados a color a pesar de la laboriosidad del proceso y la mayoría de los bloques utilizados eran de forma irregular.
En 1937 el partido nazi declaró que su obra era “degenerada”; le prohibió mostrarla en público, su estudio fue bombardeado y más de 700 cuadros suyos fueron confiscados de los museos de la nación. Para el año 1944 todos sus bloques de grabado en madera y las planchas de sus láminas habían sido destruidas.
Siguió pintando hasta su muerte, en 1970.
Erich Heckel was one of the charter members of Die Brücke founded in Dresden in 1905. Their meetings took place in a former butchershop and Heckel served as Treasurer and Secretary responsible for its organization. He was a close friend of Karl Schmidt-Rottluff who he met in highschool in 1901. Both studied architecture at the Technical Academy in Dresden but left their studies after founding Die Brucke. In 1909, he took a long sojourn to Italy. In the Fall of 1911, Die Brucke moved to Berlin where they met most of the painters of the avant-garde but in 1913, the group disbanded. After seeing the Futurist exhibition in April 1912, Heckel’s style became Prismatic, organized in a series of triangular planes. He volunteered for service in WWI, but was deemed unfit to serve and instead worked as a medic in Flanders along with other artists. Heckel was able to continue working on his art during the war years, especially his graphics. His specialty was interior scenes that express melancholy and loneliness. His subjects are usually outsiders like circus performers and madmen in anxious or fearful situations.
Heckel produced his first woodcut in 1904. He made 460 woodcuts, almost 200 etchings and 400 lithographs. Most of these works were executed between 1903-23. Heckel especially loved the color woodcut despite the fact that this medium was quite laborious because each block had to be sawed apart and inked separately. Heckel frequently used irregularly shaped formats and often refers to his paintings in his graphics. His graphic output declined in the 1920s but resumed after WWII.
In 1937, The Nazis deemed his art as “Degenerate.” 729 works were expelled from German museums. In January 1944, his studio was bombed and all of his blocks and plates were destroyed. He later moved to Lake Constance where he took up graphics again but these later works are overshadowed by the genius of his early works.
Una selección de la obra de Heckel:
|Read Erich Heckel Biography
|IN DER VIERTEN KLASSE
Signed and dated lower right EHeckel 07. Titled lower left 4. Klasse andLithogr Handdruck. One of seven to ten known impressions. On greenish-gray wove.
Size: 322 x 266 mm (472 x 370 mm)
Reference: Dube L 5 II
Signed with a monogram within the woodblock. On thin, brown thick paper. Signed, dated, titled Weisse Schuppen and inscribed Handdruck.
Provenance: A. Hess (Lugt 2796 a)
Size: 150 x 220 mm (225 x 314 mm)
Reference: Dube H 145
|FRAU AM SPIEGEL
Signed and dated Erich Heckel 08 in pencil lower right. Inscribed at the lower sheet edge by a different hand with the title Vorm Spiegel. A superb, strong impression of this extremely rare print, on thick, soft laid Japan, with full margins.
Reference: Dube H 153 III (of IV)
Signed in pencil ‘EHeckel’ and dated ’09’.
Size: 190 x 245 mm (229 x 425 mm)
Reference: Dube L 106
Signed in pencil, dated and titled.
Fine impression on cream wove.
Reference: Dube L 124
Signed in pencil and dated lower right E Heckel 09. Titled by a different hand lower left. On greenish thick handmade laid paper. Of utmost rarity.
Reference: Dube L 114
Signed and dated in pencil lower right. Edges of the stone showing remarkable relief on verso. On cream firm wove.
Image size: 329 x 273 mm (440 x 372 mm)
Reference: Dube L 127 I (of II)
|STEHENDES KIND (FRANZI STEHEND)
Color woodcut. 1910
Signed and dated in pencil lower right and tilted. One of only 6 known impressions in black and green (presumably printed later, as usual). On thick structured paper.
Size: 367/374 mm x 241/270 mm (559 x 352 mm)
Reference: Dube 204 b 1 (of 2)
Signed and dated in pencil lower right Erich Heckel 10.
Reference: Dube R 81
|MÄDCHEN MIT TURBAN
Signed and dated in pencil lower right E Heckel 11, inscribed at lower left sheet edge Der Turban Holzsch.. A very fine impression with richly inked black areas and picking up the subtle wood grain in the background. On WINTERTHUR SILK BLOTTING HURER FRERES-wove paper.
Provenance: Verso stamp Stadtmuseum Dresden (inscribed in blue ball-pen 1919/111.) and stamp Galerie Ferdinand Möller.
Size: 315 x 213 mm (440 x 259 mm)
Reference: Dube H 211
|FRAUEN AM STRAND
Signed in pencil and dated Erich Heckel 12 lower right. Titled in the lower left edge Frauen am Strand. From an edition of 50 on firm sturdy paper.
Reference: Dube R 103
|ZWEI MANNER AM TISCH
Signed in pencil.
Very good, hand-printed impression on laid paper
Reference: Dube 250 II
|MÄDCHEM MIT HOHEM HUT
Signed and dated in pencil lower right EHeckel 13, inscribed lower left 5. Dr.(fifth impression), with monogram and date 13 in the plate lower left. Fine impression with burr and rich platetone. On greenish firm laid paper with watermark ZITTAL. Very rare. Dube does not mention an edition.
Reference: Dube R 114
Signed in pencil lower right Erich Heckel. On chamois laid paper with a Rampant Lion or Gryphon watermark, with full margins. A very fine impression. The richly inked black areas printed with fine subtleties of the wood-grain.
Reference: Dube H 265 II
|KNIENDE AM STEIN
Signed in pencil lower right and dated. According to Dube a proof aside from the edition of 40, which where signed by the printer Voigt and published in the portfolio Elf Holzschnitte, Berlin, 1921. Brilliant impression on thick wove paper.
Size: 499 x 311/323 mm (689 x 495 mm)
Reference: Dube H 258 A (of B b)
|SITZENDE AM WASSER
Signed and dated in pencil lower right Erich Heckel 13. Richly inked impression on Japan, the full sheet. Size: 307 x 323/282 mm (705 x 557 mm)
Size: 12 2/16 x 11 1/8-12 3Ž4 in. (27 3Ž4 x 21 15/16 in.)
Reference: Dube 249 a (of b II)
Signed in pencil Erich Heckel and dated 13. Brilliant impression, the full sheet. Size: 416 x 285/310 mm (700 x 556 mm)
Size: 16 3/8 x 11 1/4/12 3/16 in. (27 9/16 x 21 7/8 inches
Reference: Dube 260 II
|BADENDE AN DER ALSTER
Pencil drawing. 1913.
Signed lower right Erich Heckel.The preparatory drawing for the etching with the same title (Dube 121). On wove paper.
Size: 403 x 506 mm
|BADENDE AN DER ALSTER
Signed and dated in pencil lower right Erich Heckel 14. A superb, rich impression on firm paper. The full sheet, in excellent condition. With an unidentified collectors stamp SM on verso.
Size: 140 x 192 mm (335 x 412 mm)
Reference: Dube R 121
|ZWEI MÄDCHEN AM MEER (AM STEIN)
Signed and dated in pencil lower right Heckel 14, and titled at the lower left sheet edge Zwei Mädchen am Meer. On yellowish wove paper, with wide margins.
Size: 411/421 x 271/283 mm (694 x 501 mm)
Reference: Dube L 224
Signed and dated in pencil.Also signed by the printer Voigt.
A brilliant impression on thick gray Japan with the blindstamp of the publisher.
Published by Fritz Gurlitt, Berlin.
Reference: Dube 272 II B
Signed and dated in pencil lower right Erich Heckel 14. Brilliant impression with burr on chamois firm sturdy paper. Published by Fritz Gurlitt, Berlin.
Reference: Dube R 127 A (of B)
|IN DER GARDEROBE
Signed in pencil. From the edition of 10, printed on thick, fibrous Japan. In addition to 30 impressions on laid paper.
Size: 207 x 159 mm (354 x 254 mm)
Reference: Dube 134 B
|IN DER TRAM
Signed in pencil lower right. Dated and inscribed lower left. On
laid paper. Early state before the stone was reduced and before all editions.
Image size: 271 x 320 mm (374 x 445 mm)
Reference: Dube 241 II (of III C)
Color woodcut in green, blue, ochre and black. 1918.
Signed and dated in pencil lower right Erich Heckel 19. An superb, early impression of the second state before the edition printed and signed by Voigt for I.B. Neumann. The inks thinly applied to the blocks with the brush and printed to a very lively and transparent effect. On chamois PANNEKOEK laid paper with full margins.
Size: 462 x 327 mm (587 x 464 mm)
Reference: Dube H 318 II (of III B)