May 9, 2006

Happy New Year 1917

The Faces (Die Gesichter)

Happy New Year 1917


Max Beckmann

(German, 1884–1950)


Sheet: 29.8 x 37 cm (11 3/4 x 14 9/16 in.); Plate: 24.2 x 29.8 cm (9 1/2 x 11 3/4 in.)

Gift of The Print Club of Cleveland 1975.53

Catalogue raisonné: Hofmaier 108

State: V/V



This closely packed image portrays a mix of people at a holiday party. A skeleton-like war veteran with a patched eye is just one of several inebriated patrons whose celebration of a new year, Beckmann implies, is pure folly. The artist often worked in drypoint, a method of directly scratching a plate to create an image that, when inked, retains a velvety burr around the lines. The technique allowed him to work spontaneously, similar to sketching with a pen on paper.

See also
PR - Drypoint
Type of artwork: 

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