In my article on Fränzi Fehrmann I mentioned how Ernst Ludwig Kirchner was occasionally a sculptor. Here’s one of his sculpted pieces, though it dates from several years past the Fränzi era. What fascinates me most about the sculpture is how the mother looks dejected and downcast while the little girl appears optimistic and excited.
I thought at first it might be that Fränzi was the model for the mother, posing with one of her two daughters; the expression on the mother’s face coincides with Kirchner’s observations of her as an adult, as recounted in Johanna Brade’s description of her life in the Dictionary of Artist’s Models:
“When Kirchner visited Fehrmann again in Dresden, on 12 February 1926, she had two illegitimate children. Kirchner noted in his sketchbook: ‘Fränzi herself is very sad and gloomy because of her misfortune with the children. Her youthful memories, of Moritzburg, etc., are the happiest part of her life.’ An album containing photographs from these early years, which Fehrmann had at that time and which would now be of tremendous documentary value has not been found.”
The problem is that the sculpture dates from 1924, about two years before Kirchner’s visit to Fehrmann.