Two girls in the evening hustle and bustle of a big city. Everything is in motion. Persons and objects dissolve into crystalline geometric forms. Figures appear double, coloured lines cut through the scene, cones of light glare between the buildings. Macke was impressed by the way the Italian Futurists had glorified speed and technology in their paintings. Yet he did not reduce his composition entirely to abstract forms. The girls contemplate the goings-on but do not merge with their surroundings.
From 1900 onwards, the Frankfurt chemist and industrialist Carl Hagemann (1867‒1940) assembled one of the most important private collections of modern art. It included numerous paintings, drawings, watercolours and prints, especially by members of the artist group “Die Brücke”. After Carl Hagemann died in an accident during the Second World War, the then Städel director Ernst Holzinger arranged for Hagemann’s heirs to evacuate his collection with the museum’s collection. In gratitude, the family donated almost all of the works on paper to the Städel Museum in 1948. Further donations and permanent loans as well as purchases of paintings and watercolours from the Hagemann estate helped to compensate for the losses the museum had suffered in 1937 as part of the Nazi’s “Degenerate Art” campaign. Today, the Hagemann Collection forms the core of the Städel museum’s Expressionist collection.
This painting from the Hagemann Collection was acquired with help of the foundation of Carl Schaub (1851–1905), a man of independant means living in Frankfurt's West End. In 1905, he had established a foundation, which was appointed as heir to his estate. Its purpose was to acquire works of art for the Städel. Since the bequest of Johann Friedrich Städel, this was the largest legacy for art in Frankfurt.
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:
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