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  • Early Work

    Already in his early years, between 1903 and 1910, as a student in secondary school in Innsbruck, Austria, Alfons Walde (1891-1958) was proving his extraordinary talent as a painter (e.g, Still Life, 1906). Several Walde watercolors, first shown in the Czichna Art Gallery, in 1911 and 1912, document the advanced state of the young artist’s craft. At the time, Walde was particularly influenced by the late impressionist work of Max von Esterle, which featured intricate colors. Though Walde’s watercolor technique already showed a characteristic impulsiveness and intensity of color, his fellow artist guided him to a more subtle and sensitive understanding of composition.
    Selecting motifs from his immediate surroundings in Kitzbühel, Austria, as well as nearby landscapes, Walde soon moved toward a pointilistic style that was characterized by an atmosphere of vibrant light, as evidenced by his works Der Schwarzsee (The Black Lake) and Die Kirchstiege (Church Steps), the latter depicting the church in Kitzbühel. These watercolors originated in the years 1910-1911. Not only did they confirm Walde’s fundamental understanding of technique and pictorial expression, but also provided the artist with the necessary motivation to pursue a full-time career as a painter.
    In 1910, Alfons Walde began his studies at the k.-k. (imperial-royal) Technical University of Vienna. His move to Vienna exposed the artist to the vibrant Viennese art scene, including such groups as the Secession, the Hagenbund and the Neukunstgruppe. Walde’s development toward a more expressive style didn’t take long, as he gained inspiration from his exposure to such notable Viennese artists as Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, Oskar Kokoschka, etc.
    Walde’s ensuing repertoire is characterized by his expressive use of black, red and blue, as his compositional style developed a new focus on landscape structures and the “summaric” representation of human figures. Also emerging in this period’s work is his characteristic technique of making “engravings” on the surface of his paintings, using the opposite end of the paintbrush.
    Walde produced many small, square-format oil paintings on cardboard, with thick, rounded, wooden frames that were designed and painted in off-white by the artist himself. Most frequently, the viewer encounters motifs of landscapes, forest clearings, houses, farms, chapels, religious crosses marking the local paths, and other scenes typical of the area around Kitzbühel; motifs from the micro-universe that surrounded the maturing artist, many of them long since disappeared or dramatically altered in appearance. Regardless of theme, the viewer is continually invited to experience Walde’s innermost moments of perception and emotion when looking at these unique, intimate “visual thoughts.” Secluded from metropolitan life, this genre finds itself reduced to an idyllic view that is, ultimately, indebted to its own mentality. Such interpretation might sound a little sentimental, but rejection of the urban lifestyle and a strong yearning for increased control over the immediate “living space” are quite evident in the artist’s work.


    Stillleben

    Still-life “Stillleben”, 1906
    Water-color on Paper, 15,75 x 22,83 in
    (40 x 58 cm)
    Kitzbühel, privately owned

    Schifahrer_WZ Skier “Schifahrer”, about 1910
    Oilcray on onPaper,
    privately owned
    Baeckenbichl-S25_1080_WZ Bäckenbichl in Kitzbühel
    “Bäckenbichl”, 1913
    Tempera on Cardboard, 22,05 x 18,5 in
    (56 x 47 cm)
    Kitzbühel, privately owned
    8044-40_1080_WZ Springtime on the Black Lake
    “Frühlingsstimmung (Schwarzsee)”, 1911
    Water-color, 12,6 x 20,47 in (32 x 52 cm)
    privately owned
    8044-38_1080_WZ The last rut “Die letzte Furche”, 1911
    Water-color, 11,42 x 14,96 in (29 x 38 cm)
    privately owned
    8044-53_1080_WZ Evening Time “Abendstimmung”, 1911
    Water-color, 11,54 x 14,96 in
    (29,3 x 38 cm)
    privately owned
    8044-52_1080_WZ Church of Kitzbühel
    “Pfarrkirche Kitzbühel”, 1911
    Water-color, 14,96 x 11,54 in (38 x 29,3 cm)
    privately owned
    Grabkreuze-S23_1080_WZ Crosses on Graves
    “Grabkreuz”, about 1912
    Oil on Canvas, 27,56 x 27,17 in (70 x 69 cm)
    Innsbruck, Tiroler Landesmuseum, Ferdinandeum
    Kirchstiege_1080_WZ Churchsteps “Kirchstiege”, 1913
    Oil on Cardboard, 10,63 x 11,42 in
    (27 x 29 cm)
    Galerie Oberweger
    8044-16_1080_WZ Easter Sunday “Palmsonntag”,
    about 1914

    Oil on Cardboard, 11,02 x 11,81 in (28 x 30 cm)
    Innsbruck, privately owned
    Kapelle-S200_00021_1080_WZ Chapel “Kapelle”, 1914
    Oil on Cardboard, 10,83 x 11,22 in
    (27,5 x 28,5 cm)
    Kitzbühel, Museum Kitzbühel
    8044-17-1080-WZ The way to Church
    “Kirchgang”, about 1914
    Oil on Cardboard, 10,63 x 11,42 in
    (27 x 29 cm)
    Innsbruck, privately owned
    8044-30_1080_WZ Gossip “Tratschen”, about 1914
    Oil on Cardboard, 10,63 x 11,61 in
    (27 x 29,5 cm)
    Wien, Kunsthandel Wienerroither & Kohlbacher
    K15-Frauen im Roecklgwand_S182_0023_1080_WZ Three Women in Traditional Costumes
    “Drei Frauen in Tracht
    (Drei Frauen im Röcklgwand)”, 1913
    Oil on Canvas, 19,88 x 11,02 in
    (50,5 x 28 cm)
    Kitzbühel, Museum Kitzbühel
    8044-42_1080_WZ The Meeting “Begegnung”, 1913
    Tempera on Cardboard, 10,83 x 11,81 in (27,5 x 30 cm)
    privately owned
    Jahrmarkt-S219_00137_1080 _WZ Annual Fair “Jahrmarkt”, 1913/14
    Oil on Cardboard, 14,57 x 11,42 in
    (37 x 29 cm)
    privately owned
    Gasslrennen-S204_1080_WZ Sledgerace “Gasslrennen”, 1913
    Oil on Canvas, 10,83 x 11,42 in
    (27,5 x 29 cm)
    Kitzbühel, Museum Kitzbühel
    Schikurs-S39_1080_WZ Skicourse “Schikurs”, 1914
    Oil on Cardboard, 11,02 x 10,63 in
    (28 x 27 cm)
    Innsbruck, Tiroler Landesmuseum, Ferdinandeum
    8044-02_1080_WZ On the slope “Auf der Schiwiese”, 1914
    Oil on Cardboard, 11,81 x 10,83 in
    (30 x 27,5 cm)
    Innsbruck, privately owned
    8044-27_1080_WZ On the slope “Auf der Schiwiese”, 1912
    Oil on Cardboard, 11,81 x 11,02 in
    (30 x 28 cm)
    Innsbruck, Stadt Innsbruck, Kulturamt
    208-K23-Schifahrerin_1080_WZ Female Skier “Schifahrerin”, 1912
    Tempera on Cardboard, 11,65 x 10,79 in
    (29,6 x 27,4 cm)
    Kitzbühel, Museum Kitzbühel
    K22-Zwei Schifahrerinnen_s209_00077_1080_WZ Two Skiers “Zwei Schifahrerinnen”, 1914
    Oil on Cardboard, 10,83 x 11,42 in
    (27,5 x 29 cm)
    Kitzbühel, Museum Kitzbühel
    8044-05_1080_WZ Cross Country-Skiing
    “Schilanglauf”, 1914

    Tempera on Cardboard, 6,3 x 6,69 in
    (16 x 17 cm)
    Kitzbühel, Museum Kitzbühel
    8044-04_1080_WZ On the Top of the Kitzbühler Horn
    “Auf dem Gipfel des Kitzbüheler Horns”, 1913
    Oil on Cardboard, 10,83 x 11,61 in
    (27,5 x 29,5 cm)
    Innsbruck, privately owned
    8044-19_1080_WZ Forrest “Waldung”, 1914
    Wintersonne-S198_00087_1080_WZ Wintersun “Wintersonne”, 1914
    Oil on Cardboard, 12,01 x 11,22 in
    (30,5 x 28,5 cm)
    Kitzbühel, Museum Kitzbühel
    Nazenhaeusl_S47_00046_1080_WZ Nazenhäusl (House in Kitzbühel)
    “Nazenhäusl”, about 1914
    Oil on Cardboard, 10,83 x 11,42 in
    (27,5 x 29 cm)
    privately owned
    Einsames Haus-S197_00056_1080_WZ Solitary House “Einsames Haus”, 1913
    Oil on Cardboard, 10,63 x 11,42 in
    (27 x 29 cm)
    privately owned
    Herbstabend-S194_00076_1080_WZ Evening in Autumn
    “Herbstabend”, about 1914
    Oil on Cardboard, 10,83 x 11,42 in
    (27,5 x 29 cm)
    privately owned
    8044-18_1080_WZ Evening in Spring
    “Frühlingsabend”, 1914
    Oil on Cardboard, 10,63 x 11,81 in
    (27 x 30 cm)
    privately owned
    8044-20_1080_WZ Alpine Flowers
    “Alpenblumen”, 1914
    Oil on Cardboard, 7,48 x 8,27 in
    (19 x 21 cm)
    privately owned
    8044-01_1080_WZ Sunflowers “Sonnenblumen”
    Oil on Canvas
    D-GW-113 II17-Knappenhaeusl Knappenhäusl (House in Kitzbühel)
    “Knappenhäusl”, 1913
    D-GW-115  II19-In der Mittagssonne Tiefenbrunnerstall00075 Sun at Noon
    “In der Mittagsonne”, 1914
    D-GW-118  Wegkreuz_00061 Kopie Cross on a Path ” Kreuz am Weg”
    Oil on Cardboard