Grieving Parents by Käthe Kollwitz (Katie KAWL vits)
The models for these sculptures are Kollwitz and her husband.
The sculptures reside in the graveyard where their son, Peter,
a German soldier who died in 1914, is buried.
“The task is to bear it not only during these few weeks, but for a long time –
in dreary November as well, and also when spring comes again,
in March, the month of young men who wanted to live and are dead.”
Mutter mit Zwillingen
Much of her art is a response to war and death.
There are grotesque representations of death,
hollow-eyed mothers, grieving mothers.
Kollwitz featured the working class as her subjects.
In this drawing you see the weariness of mom
contrasted with the repose of baby.
Working Woman with Sleeping Child, 1927
55 drawings, article, Käthe Kollwitz Museum Köhn
(click on English at bottom)
Such emotion. You can just feel her pain and want to commiserate with her. And they are more than just raw emotion, aren’t they? Beautiful lines, clean and proportionate, I particularly like the contrast between the mother and child, it is such a comment on the society but still you can see the sweetness of humanity.
Good for you, to recognize tragedy can still be fine art!I’ve seen a couple Kollwitz’ working class drawings, but had no idea of the grieving moms- thank you for the experience!
These are sad but beautiful–interesting how those two things can coexist– for some reason i’m drawn to the bent figure in the top photo. It carries such a story in its shaping.
How did you learn of this artist? I have never seen these works — they are not inviting and yet compel studying.
@LaurieLH – Kollwitz was featured in a segment in the PBS special we watched, “The Great War.” It made me want to learn more.