Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Lina Ammer, painter & printmaker

Lina (Karolina) Ammer
maybe ! (Landau 1866-1933 Ering) 
German painter and printmaker 
Publishing this tribute to painter and printmaker Karolina or Lina Ammer (her cartouche-monogram is LA) maybe one day will help solving the mystery about her biography, or rather the absence of it. This obituary (right)  is maybe fitting "our" Lina Ammer according to which she died as a pensioner (without kin ?) and after a miserable last period. 

Lina Ammer was a teacher at the Regensburg Sankt Mariën Lyzeum für Englische Fräulein (St. Marie's school for English ladies) esth. in 1903 (left). It was founded and teaches after the principles of the English nun and founding sister Mary Ward (1585-1645) (read here*

Real and not armchair and web-based research will have to confirm the artist belonging to the obituary datings because her year of birth is also "mentioned" as 1871 and her death as 1935. Maybe also one day this posting will lead me to the highest ranking illusive parrot print on my wishlist. 

Sources indicate Landau is the city were she was born, Regensburg on river Donau were she taught at school and started and lead a private painting school for ladies from the late 1890's and Ering (near the Austrian border) the site were she (may have) died. These places are all situated in the south east of Germany (Bavaria) and not far, a crows flight, apart. Left a Regensburg painting by artist Hedwig Reisinger 1904-1998, below a contemporary panorama.
She is said to have studied in München's Kunst und Gewerbeschule (Arts and Crafts school) under Heinrich Stelzner (1833-1910), Anton Azbe (1862-1905), Bernard Buttersack (1858-1925) and Guido Joseph Kern (1878-1953). I give as many clues to ensure further possible future additions by readers. 

Seeing these works (and it has taken me quite some time finding, excavating and collecting them) it is again sad and bewildering so little is known and delivered to us. Not only about Lina Ammer's life but on so many other wonderful artists, lesser Gods and Goddesses of painting and printmaking. The wonderful blue parrots once were auctioned in the US: see below for a quick genealogical survey on the Ammer family and maybe how it came to be in America.

In one occasion I've found her name as an illustrator for a 1900 Regensburg history book. The name of only one Regensburg private student of Lina Ammer, who studied with her for 8 years, emerged from the internet: Gabriëlle Greger (1901-1982): no examples.

These two oil paintings, found in old auction catalogues, by Lina Ammer closing this posting on this artist and sharing all I have been able to trace on her life and her works. Hopefully the force of the Internet and help from readers will help changing this in near future.
Added print 24th april 2013
Notice: As I've experienced some of these postings, or the contents are obviously "used" as reference by third parties (and I do not blame them) I've added this last find, (from Ebay) April 24th. It has been enhanced and straightened just a little (you may object and complain) because of foxing, folds and creases in the original. But since comments are really scarce I'm confident it will be accepted silently and with gratitude.    

All pictures are mouse clickable to embiggen and
borrowed freely from the Internet for friendly, educational and non-comercial use only.

Some genealogical notes on a Bavarian Ammer family and the USA.

On the 6th of october 1908 one Lina Ammer (aged 40, so born around 1868) visited America travelling in the Norddeutsche Lloyd ocean steamer SS Rhein from Bremen and passed Ellis Island. The mentioned village of "Spperhofen" sadly doesn't ring any bell: it is probably misspelled. Maybe a certain Bavarian reader can help.

Years before all but two children othe Bavarian familie of Ludwig Gerstbrein (1834-1880) and Magdalena Leightinger: Alois, Otto, Theresa, Ludwig, Georg and Heinrich, all emigrated into the USA and to Pittsburg. After Ludwig died the widowed Magdalena followed her children in 1896 aged 60. She died in Pittsburg 1910. The family originated from small villages like Kimoden, Straubing, Hirschkofen, Metting all in a small circle in Bavaria. Magdalena travelled with SS Lahn from Bremen through Southampton. 

But two other sisters are said to have stayed in Germany: Maria (1863-1942) who married Xaver Ammer (1860-1939) and one Carolina Lena (with both names mentioned) said to have been married to an Ammer as well. Xaver Ammer was the son of Jacob Ammer (1830-1908) and Anna Wurm (1835-1898) from Metting Bavaria.

There is a possibility Lina Ammer actually is Lina Gerstbrein maybe visiting her brothers sisters and her mother Magdalena in 1908. 

Xaver Ammer and Maria Gertsbrein had 12 children, among them a Lina Ammer (1894-1961) who later also emigrated to the USA. She would/could have been Lina's namesake niece (after Magdalena) aged 14 in 1908. One of their other children was named Crescentia, probably after grandmother Magdalena's sister: Crescentia Leihtinger (1823-1901) and spelled without the h, who emigrated a generation before to Wisconsin USA. Family members travelled back and forth to Germany like brother Ludwig jr. marrying in Bavaria before returning to his home in the States. Others came back to die and be burried and in the motherland.  

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