Georg Tappert


Tappert, Georg

Berlín, 1880 - 1957

Varieté, 1911

© George Tappert, VEGAP, Madrid, 2015

Signed lower right: ''Tappert''.
Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection
Location: Thyssen-Bornemisza National Museum, Madrid

Oil on canvas

118,8 x 109,8 cm


Artwork history

  • Sotheby’s Auctions,  New York, lot 272, May 12, 1994

  • Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection


Georg Tappert-Gedächtnisausstellung. Gemälde der Jahre 1906-1932, Cassel, Kunstverein, n. 9


Georg Tappert, Berlín, Galerie Nierendorf, n. 30


Retrospective Exhibition of paintings by Georg Tappert, Nueva York, Leonard Hutton Galleries, n. 16


Capolavori dalla Collezione di Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza: 60º anniversario dell'apertura della Pinacotecca di Villa Favorita, Lugano, Villa Favorita, n. 114, p. 290, lám. p. 291

1998 - 1999

Masterworks from the Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection, Tokio, Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum; Takaoka, Takaoka Art Museum; Nagoya, Matsuzaka Art Museum; Sendai, Miyagi Museum of Art, n. 89, p. 200, lám. p. 201


Del impresionismo a la vanguardia en la Colección Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza, México, DF, Museo del Palacio de Bellas Artes, . no figuró en el catálogo


Del post-impresionismo a las vanguardias. Pintura de comienzos del siglo XX en la Colección Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza, Valencia, IVAM Centre Julio González, n. 32, p. 108, lám. p. 109

2000 - 2001

La Révolte de la couleur. De l'impressionnisme aux Avant-gardes. Chefs-d'oeuvre de la Collection Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza, Bruselas, Musée d'Ixelles, n. 38, p. 120, lám. p. 121, det. p. 96


Georg Tappert. Deutscher Expressionist, Schleswig, Stiftung Schleswig-Holsteinische Landesmuseen, Schloss Gottorf; Nuremberg, Germanisches Nationalmuseum, n. 26, p. 73. [Ver PDF en Bibliografía]


Liebermanns Gegner. Die Neue Secession in Berlin und der Expressionismus, Berlín, Max Liebermann Haus; Schleswig, Schloss Gottorf, p. 192, lám. p. 193


L'ideal en el paisatge. De Meifrèn a Matisse i Gontxarova. Col·lecció Carmen Thyssen, Sant Feliu de Guíxols, fundació Privada Centre d'Art Col·lecció Catalana de Sant Feliu de Guíxols, p. 108, lám. p. 109

2019 - 2020

Influencers in art. From Van Goyen to Pop Art. Museu Carmen Thyssen Andorra. p. 60, 61, 144, 145 y 146.

  • -Dresslers Kunsthandbuch. Rostock, 1910.

  • -Jansa, F.: Deutsche bildende Künstler in Wort und Bild. Leipzig, 1912.

  • -Tappert, G.: “Über das neue Kunstprogramm”. Kunst und Künstler. 1914, n. 12, p. 306 y ss.

  • -Pfemfert, F.: Die Aktion-Zeitschrift für Politik, Literatur, Kunst. Berlin, 1916. [Special published dedicated to Georg Tappert], n. 37/38.

  • -Harms, A.: Artículos varios Die Schöne Rarität. Kiel, 1917-19. [ Special published dedicated to Georg Tappert]

  • -Däubler, T.: “George Grosz, Im Kampfe um die moderne Kunst”. Edschmid, K.: Tribüne der Kunst und Zeit. Berlín, Erich Reiss, 1919, vol. 3 , p. 179.

  • -Wietek, G.: Georg Tappert – Ein Wegbereiter der deutschen Moderne. Munich, 1980, n. 135, lám.

  • -Georg Tappert, das Vermächtnis. Werke der Georg-Tappert-Stiftung: Gemälde, Aquarelle, Zeichnungen, Druckgraphik, Photographien. [Exhib. Cat.]. Wetzel, B. (ed.). Schleswig, Schleswig Holsteinisches Landesmuseum, 1995, [ Sheet by Wetzel]

  • -Wietek, G.: Georg Tappert – Werkverzeichnis der Druckgraphik. Cologne, 1996.

  • -Capolavori dalla Collezione di Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza: 60º anniversario dell’apertura della Pinacotecca di Villa Favorita. Llorens Serra, Tomàs (ed.). [Exhib. Cat. Lugano, Villa Favorita]. Geneva-Milan, Skira, 1997, n. 114, p. 290. [Sheet by Gerhart Wietek]

  • Colección Carmen Thyssen-Bornemisza. Arnaldo, Javier (ed.). 2 vols. Madrid, Fundación Colección Thyssen-Bornemisza, 2004, vol. 2, p. 384, lám. p. 385 [Sheet by Gerhard Wietek]

  • -Barholomeyczik, Gesa: “Georg Tapperts Menschenbilder”.  Schleswig/Nuremberg 2005, pp. 14-25, cit. p. 20.

  • -Georg Tappert. Deutscher Expressionist. Bartholomeyczik, Gesa (ed.). [Exhib. Cat.]. Schleswig, Georg Tappert-Stiftung – Stiftung Schleswig-Holsteinische Landesmuseen, Schloss Gottorf; Nuremberg, Germanisches Nationalmuseum – Archiv für Bildende Kunst, 2005 , p. 151 [Sheet by Gesa Bartholomeyczik]

  • -Alarcó, P. y Borobia, M. (eds.): Guía de la colección. Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza. Madrid, Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza, 2012, p. 318, lám.

  • -L’ideal en el paisatge. De Meifrèn a Matisse i Gontxarova. Col·lecció Carmen Thyssen, Sant Feliu de Guíxols, fundació Privada Centre d’Art Col·lecció Catalana de Sant Feliu de Guíxols, 2014, p. 108, lám. p. 109 (Exhib. Cat.).

  • -“Influencers” en el arte. De Van Goyen al “Pop Art”. Museu Carmen Thyssen Andorra.[Exhib. Cat. Museu Carmen Thyssen Andorra], Andorra, 2019, p. 60, 61, 144, 145 y 146    [Sheet by  Gerhard Wietek]

Expert report

Varieté of 1911 is among the artist’s finest and most important works, as well as one of his largest. Its subject matter, inspired by a common urban spectacle in the artist’s day, is one to which Tappert returned on numerous occasions in paintings, drawings and prints which repeat the subject with variations and transformations. The unusual presence of a complete inscription on the back of the painting that includes the artist’s name, and also the painting’s title, date, and the name of the place where it was painted, all serve as a reliable indicator of the importance that the painter attributed to this work.

In the still relatively young capital city of Berlin, the Wintergarten-the largest variety theatre in pre-war Germany-had been inaugurated as recently as 1886. Among its many habitual patrons was Tappert, who found the inspiration for his painting there. This composition depicts two dancers in different costumes, each with a fan, performing on stage. The dancer on the left is shown from behind, the one on the right in a frontal pose. There are signed nude drawings of these same dancers naked except for the fans. The significance of this accessory, which both covers up and reveals something about Tappert’s women, was evoked with considerable empathy by the poet Georg Däubler (1876-1934) in his essay on the painter, published in 1919. The lanterns hanging between the dancers allude to stage lighting and suggest spatial depth. The colours used are generally pure, unmixed ones. Their effect, particularly their overall intensity, is unusual and provocative in the context of contemporary taste. The remainder of the picture surface is filled with abstract ornamental patterns with strong chromatic contrasts, found in other pictures by Tappert of around this time. These patterns document the artist’s precocious interest in the budding Cubist movement. The striking figure of the dancer on the right also inspired other paintings as well as later prints of his favourite model, Betty, who is documented up to 1914. This fact confirms the importance Tappert accorded to this subject, a work which draws from both the artist’s own experience and from the contemporary art of the period. Like his prostitutes, clowns, and other circus performers, Tappert painted these figures with hardly any temporal or historical referents so as to symbolise a new individual freedom. His unique works of this type, emblematic of his time and painted with an expressive intensity, reveal the painter as both one of the innovative figures of modern German art in the newly metropolitan city of Berlin and as an artist who affirmed the new style of German Expressionism. A photograph in the artist’s estate, showing him in front of this picture after it was rediscovered having been banned for 20 years, is a further testimonial to the importance that Tappert attached to this particular picture within his own oeuvre.

Gerhard Wietek