Quay Wall, Max Beckmann
Max Beckmann
Quay Wall
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Max Beckmann

Quay Wall, 1936

41.0 x 80.5 cm
Physical Description
Oil on canvas
Inventory Number
Acquired in 1959, property of Städelscher Museums-Verein e.V.
Not on display


About the Work

Max Beckmann felt a deep affinity with the sea, the source of all life. Metre-high waves darken the horizon with foaming surf, bearing witness to the primeval forces of this element. The wall of the quay obstinately resists the natural force. Apocalyptic-looking cloud formations obscure the final red glow of the setting sun - perhaps a sign of the National Socialists' reign of terror, which would force Beckmann to emigrate just one year later, leading to a radical change in his own life and to years of isolation.

Work Data

Basic Information

Quay Wall
Period Produced
Object Type
Physical Description
Oil on canvas
Label at the Time of Manufacture
Signiert und datiert unten rechts: Beckmann 36
Work Catalogues
  • Göpel 2021, Nr. 432

Property and Acquisition

Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main, Eigentum des Städelschen Museums-Vereins e.V.
Picture Copyright
Public Domain
Acquired in 1959, property of Städelscher Museums-Verein e.V.

Work Content

Motifs and References

Main Motif



Research and Discussion


Object History
Max Beckmann (1884-1950), Berlin
vermutlich Geschenk an Minna Beckmann-Tube (1881-1964), Berlin, später Gauting bei München
Günther Franke, München
Henry Goverts (1892-1988), Hamburg, später Vaduz
Verst. R.N. Ketterer, Stuttgart an den Städelschen Museumsverein, Frankfurt am Main, 20. November 1959.


Since 2001, the Städel Museum has systematically been researching the provenance of all objects that were acquired during the National Socialist period, or that changed owners or could have changed owners during those years. The basis for this research is the “Washington Declaration”, also known as the “Washington Conference Principles”, formulated at the 1998 “Conference on Holocaust-Era Assets” and the subsequent “Joint Declaration”.

The provenance information is based on the sources researched at the time they were published digitally. However, this information can change at any time when new sources are discovered. Provenance research is therefore a continuous process and one that is updated at regular intervals.

Ideally, the provenance information documents an object’s origins from the time it was created until the date when it found its way into the collection. It contains the following details, provided they are known:

  • the type of acquisition and/or the way the object changed hands
  • the owner's name and place of residence
  • the date on which it changed hands

The successive ownership records are separated from each other by a semicolon.

Gaps in the record of a provenance are indicated by the placeholder “…”. Unsupported information is listed in square brackets.

If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact the museum at .

Conservation and Restoration

Art-technology findings and/or documentation regarding conservation and restoration are available for this work. If interested, please contact .

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