Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Else Ruest, Heimatkünstler aus Hannover

Before I try to continu following printmaker Cäre Neuhaus (in before posting) I must "fit in" this artist first. I met her in september 1915 with Cläre Neuhaus in Bonn Obernier Museum in the “Graphische Wanderausstellung” (traveling exhibition) with later famous painter/etcher Anna Feldhusen (1867-1951) from Bremen, and many others. 

Anna Feldhusen

Ruest, Elisabeth (Else)
(Hannover 19-04-1891 – 28-03-1945 Hannover)
 Landscape and flower painter, “Gebrauchsgraphiker” and graphic artist (no woodblock prints known).
"Home-painter: working locally choosing mainly topics "close to home".  

She died in the allied bombing of Hannover in the night of march 28th 1945 destroying also her house, studio and all her remaining work (90% of the city's centre was destroyed by allied bombing killing 6000 inhabitants). These 4 examples are all I was able to find. This print below I found in Neil's Adventures in the Printtrade (2012) who has stumbled also over this forgotten printmaker.  

She had been a student of the “Großherzoglichen Malerinnenschule Karlsruhe“ which was founded October 1885 and in function until 1923 by uniting private painting schools and classes and was under the patronage of grand-duchess Luise of Prussia (1838-1923). Because of the overwhelming numbers of women students the Karlsruhe academy professors, many ran private schools besides their academy work, were not able to take any more private students. Women had to wait untill 1923 before being allowed to study in the Academies. In the school students were taught by academy professors. On of Else's teachers in the school is mentioned to have been  "V.Roman"See end of this posting for more details and some remarkable findings. 

Although she must have been a prolific artist  just a few examples (and not the best pictures, sorry) of her etchings are available.

She was among the early visitors and regularly staying in the village of Schwalenberg in beautiful county Lippe near Detmold. Thanks to artists like her the little town grew into an artist colony. Berlin Academy professor  Hans Licht (1876-1935) took his students here for "en plein-air" (outdoors) painting in the french Barbizon school (1830-1870) tradition.  

Hans Licht

Printmaker and "Heimat" painter Ernst Rötteken who was born, lived, worked and died in Detmold was a frequent visitor. 

Ernst Rotteken (1910)

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


V.(iktor) Roman (1841-1916) was a teacher at drawing in the “Bender’schen Lehranstalten” in Weinheim (in Bavaria’s Black Forest). His younger brother Max Wilhelm Roman (Freiburg 30-0-4-1849 – 08-05-1910 Karlsruhe) however was a painter and lithographer and had studied in Nürnberg. He was appointed 1886 as a teacher in the newly founded Karlsruhe “Malerinnenschule” acting as its director from 1895.  I think “V. Roman” as Else's teacher is probably a mistake. 

Max Wilhelm is more likely to have been Else Ruest’s teacher at the “Malerinnenschule“ in Karlsruhe. He married 1891, 21 one years younger, painter, book cover designer and illustrator, graphic artist and ceramist Käthe Foersterling (Dresden 1871 – after 1910 Dresden) daughter of Dresden painter Otto Foersterling (1843-1904). She had possibly been his student because she’d also studied at Karlsruhe “Malerinnenschule”. She later taught in this school as a professor of flower painting in 1902 and also in the “Kunstgewerbeschule” 1903-07. 

She and her two children returned to Dresden 1907 giving up her position as a professor, it was said “because of her sickly children” Maria and Wilhelm: Maria indeed died Dresden 04-02-1910. The real reason was her husband and her mother discouraged her and made her give up her career and position because of her mental health. She'd moved to her native Dresden for treatment where she lived disillusioned. Wilhelm Jr. and his father are said to have created linocut prints. Hear year of death is unknown. 


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