Wednesday, 2 July 2014

Who was Erwin Frommbach ?

Erwin Frommbach

(born 6 september 1892 and active in Berlin around 1920)

Unknown German painter and printmaker 
Musician and director of a puppet theater in Berlin.

Who was this amateur printmaker, able to create this delightful little print of a "Havellandschaft" (Havel landscape) measuring only 8 x 10 cm.? It depicts the beautiful lake-district formed by the river Havel, surrounding the great city of Berlin and Potsdam on a sunny summers day in fresh and bright colors. It was where the great German impressionist Max Liebermann (1847-1935) lived on its borders and painted the scenery and mundane crowds on numerous occasions:

and an inspiration to many Berlin artists, like Walter Leistikow (1885-1948):

All I was able to find about Erwin Frommbach is that he was living and working in Berlin at the "Reichversicherung für Angestellte" (this national social-security system for middle-class personal was instituted in 1911). He also was a musician and worked as puppeteer, owning a puppet theater later carried on by his son Horst Frommbach. And I learned that Erwin had a sister (no name) that was the mother of Klaus Loose who was the founding father of the famous Bamberg Puppet Theater (Bamberger Marionetten Theater). In an interview that I've found in the Internet he remembered his relatives in Berlin very well and tells of the inspiration he found in the artistic environment of his uncle and nephew in Berlin before WW2.  

And researching I found these two paintings by Erwin Frommbach. But I like his print best. With this initial article/posting I'm confident with the help from readers and passers-by more information about this printmaker will surface in future. 

All pictures borrowed freely from the internet for friendly, educational and non commercial use only.


  1. Just today (April 5th 2015) I found a small four block print by E.F. at a flea market. It measures 14 by 11 cm, does not make use of a keyblock and is titeled "Alte Linde".
    Sorry that I cannot add any biographical info.