Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Discussions on the propaganda, architecture and culture in the Third Reich.
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Kunstler
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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by Kunstler » 16 Nov 2010 13:44

I have found a painting that is currently for sale by auction that I am almost certain was hung at the Berghof. I have been frantically looking through my reference material to pin down exactly which place I saw it, but I'm as sure as I can be without such hard evidence that this painting was once in Hitlers collection.

http://www.dorotheum.com/en/auktion-det ... ala-7.html

there is no mention of provenance in the auction description. The view is of the Konigsee, and if I am not mistaken the rocks in the foreground look rather like those that Hitler used to pose against, although viewed here from the opposing direction?

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Annelie
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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by Annelie » 16 Nov 2010 14:32

Kunstler, that is a great auction house. Lots of interesting items.

You could be correct about the painting and its one I would like myself but
how can one know without its provenance although a personal inquiry might
reveal more about it?

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Geoff Walden
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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by Geoff Walden » 16 Nov 2010 15:02

The Hitler artwork catalog in the US Library of Congress does contain some Koenigssee paintings, but not this particular one. However there are a couple paintings that look very much like the same style (few of these works are labeled, so unless one can see the artist's signature, it's hard to say exactly who did it) ... maybe the same artist.

But there are paintings that can be seen on the Berghof walls in period photos, that are not in that catalog, so we know that catalog is not 100% inclusive. The painting at auction could have been in the Berghof. But I don't recall seeing it in photos.

Geoff

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Kunstler
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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by Kunstler » 16 Nov 2010 18:20

Annelie wrote:Kunstler, that is a great auction house. Lots of interesting items.
Indeed it is. There are paintings currently changing hands on there in the 5 - 7000 Euro bracket that I would confidently predict will be fetching 50-100k in ten years time.

The paintings simply fell out of fashion as the art world embraced modernism, but now the quality of some of those old works, especially those of the Biedermeier period is beginning to shine through once more. After almost a century of obscurity and neglect, prices are for that genre are set to skyrocket. You heard it here first. :wink:

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Annelie
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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by Annelie » 16 Nov 2010 18:36

The paintings simply fell out of fashion as the art world embraced modernism, but now the quality of some of those old works, especially those of the Biedermeier period is beginning to shine through once more
Always loved art both modernism and old works. Bought a few in my day at Ward Price and Sotheby's but from the
looks of the prices expected in the auction I wouldn't be expecting any bargains there but I am glad to see the interest.
Its awfully tempting but I know from experience I buy because I love a piece and cannot resell.

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Kunstler
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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by Kunstler » 24 Jan 2011 16:25

I discovered something new today. In the first floor study of the Berghof were two small oil paintings next to each other. One was of Hitler's father, the other of his mother. I have often wondered who painted these as they seemed to have been done from a photograph.

In reading an account by one who knew Hitler it was revealed that Hitler himself had painted those two portraits from the small photographs in his possession. Oddly, a portrait of Hitler's mother came up recently at an art auction. It was painted in oils, and competently as opposed to 'professionally'. I remember thinking at the time why anyone would have painted this? The possibility now strikes me that it was possibly the actual painting from the Berghof by Hitler's own hand.

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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by Johnnyrocket » 24 Jan 2011 16:32

Interesting concept Kunstler, now I'm wondering also...the paintings were probably destroyed when the Berghof burned, or hanging in a vault in the town below.

Johnny R.

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Geoff Walden
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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by Geoff Walden » 24 Jan 2011 18:31

Hi all,

Majorplm posted original views of the parents' portrait paintings earlier in this thread - http://forum.axishistory.com/viewtopic. ... 4&start=30.

I can't read the signatures on them. It looks like one of them is dated 1933. I wonder if they survived ...? When Christa Schroeder was there, just before and after the bombing, she tried to save as many paintings as she could, but one gets the impression she was most interested in the "old master" or more valuable paintings. At any rate, she was only able to save a few.

Geoff

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Kunstler
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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by Kunstler » 24 Jan 2011 22:11

Hi Geoff thanks for that.

I can't see the signatures on those paintings very well but they don't appear to be Hitler's, plus I think he may have been a little busy to paint them in 1933. :) The works were intended for an oval frame which is why the signature is on a slant and thus distorted, and difficult to make out.

It's well known that the paintings in Hitler's collection were often shuffled around between Munich, Berlin and the Berghof. There is also a story that he took a small portrait of Friedrich the great with him to the various outposts. I was reading a work by Friedrich Christian, Prince of Schaumburg-Lippe, in which he speaks of his close association with Hitler since 1928. In this work he talks of knowing Hitler on a personal level, and as, due to his own title and position he didn't rely on Hitler for his job or position, he felt that he got to know the man rather than the politician.

As often happens, while reading the book some innocent comments made seemingly in passing sparked a train of thought, I'll explain that later but here's the passage that made me think.

"I was fortunate as to be able to see him (Hitler) without business obligations and without any prejudices. In terms of personal background I was probably his most extreme opposite. Each of us admitted that to the other with perfect frankness. This fact was probably the key to later understanding, which was mutual as well. I was interesting to him because of my background. I was an enigma to him at first - as he was to me.

When Hitler moved into the Reich Presidential Palace, he ordered some architectural improvements. What bothered him the most was Hindenburg's terribly old-fashioned bathroom.

He had the facilities modernized, and without running up a noteworthy bill for it. The Auditor-General's Office then told him that he would have to pay for the renovations himself and, furthermore, that he had not been authorized to effect the changes. - Hitler offered his opinion that the ancient bathroom facilities would have had to be replaced one way or another, and further, that surely the Fuhrer and Chancellor of the Reich ought to be able to make an independent decision on the fate of an old bathtub so as not to waste the state's time. As far as I know, he then proceeded to pay the bill out of his personal funds. The Palace was, after all, state property.

This happened at about the same time that Hitler showed my wife and I his bedroom, on our own request. It was a dark and somewhat plainly furnished room with a somewhat old-fashioned bed that could not have been very comfortable. On the wall above it hung a picture of his mother, which he had had painted, probably from a photograph. He said that it was a good likeness and one of his very few keepsakes from his family; it was very dear to him and not a day went by that he wasn't glad to have it."


I began to wonder if this painting was not one of the pair latterly kept at the Berghof, which had been shuffled around? I remembered the pair being by the same hand, and If so it could have meant that Hitler had painted the pair. It now appears the one at the Berghof isn't the one mentioned above, which means there's possibly another one out there. The one I remember for sale was more proficient in its execution than the first example shown in the link provided, yet not one of the pair from the study.

It may of course have been an anonymous copy, but it was old, rather battered (although I know how these things can be faked) and has me ever more intrigued having read Friedrich Christian's passage. I now wish I could recall where I saw it for sale!

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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by Johnnyrocket » 24 Jan 2011 22:25

I love a good mystery, and the final destination of the painting(s) in question is perfect.

Thanks Kunstler for the posting.

Here is a little note on the above mentioned painting of "Fredrick the Great". The one Hitler had in his bunker in 1945 actually survived the war and is in the possession of Hans Bauer's widow—Hans Bauer was Hitler's personal pilot.

Now that would be worth some big money.

Johnny R.
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robertmountfor
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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by robertmountfor » 24 Jan 2011 22:44

sadly johnny the iconic portrait didn't get that far. when Baur had his leg injured very badly on his escape from the bunker and on his capture the portrait was stolen from him and lost forever. he wrote to me a long time ago. but ge lived to a ripe old age despite losing his leg.
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majorplm
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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by majorplm » 24 Jan 2011 22:55

Kunstler wrote:I discovered something new today. In the first floor study of the Berghof were two small oil paintings next to each other. One was of Hitler's father, the other of his mother. I have often wondered who painted these as they seemed to have been done from a photograph.

In reading an account by one who knew Hitler it was revealed that Hitler himself had painted those two portraits from the small photographs in his possession. Oddly, a portrait of Hitler's mother came up recently at an art auction. It was painted in oils, and competently as opposed to 'professionally'. I remember thinking at the time why anyone would have painted this? The possibility now strikes me that it was possibly the actual painting from the Berghof by Hitler's own hand.

Hello,

Paintings of Hitler's parents were painted by Ludwig Johst.

All the best,

Philippe
(majorplm)

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Johnnyrocket
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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by Johnnyrocket » 24 Jan 2011 22:58

Now that's interesting...never knew that. Isn't it incredible how new undiscovered history is being revealed on this Forum. I'm sure the painting is gone forever and never survived the war. Thanks Robert for the info. This is new information on an interesting subject.
This would make a good subject on the "History Detective" show.

Johnny R.

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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by robertmountfor » 24 Jan 2011 23:14

Anton Graff painted the original, I believe the one treasured by AH was a copy, the original maybe at Schloss Sanssoucci? Although not sure...

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Geoff Walden
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Re: Paintings hung at the Berghof.

Post by Geoff Walden » 25 Jan 2011 00:45

majorplm wrote:Hello,

Paintings of Hitler's parents were painted by Ludwig Johst.

All the best,

Philippe
(majorplm)
Thanks, Philippe! I'm glad you were watching this thread. I could make out the Ludwig, but I would never have known the last name.

Geoff

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