Studio: international art — 17.1899

Page: 25
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Fritz Erter


There is a remarkable persistence of
racial characteristic in the art of the German
people, which, buried out of sight sometimes under
foreign influences to which this people yields
perhaps somewhat too readily in matters of
taste, is roused now and again into strong mani-
festation in their arts and crafts. Dormant for
long periods, until it has become but the dimmest
of memories, this national feeling underlying the
whole character of the people stands forth, at
times, rejuvenated and militant. A voice is heard
above the din of the busy world chanting the old
hero-tales of the race. It falls strangely upon the


ears of the modern crowd busying itself in money'--

Something of this comes into one’s thoughts
before Fritz Erler’s work. There is a fine strong
Berserk sweep to his arm ; there is a breath of
the Thiiringer Wald in his art; here is the old
Rasse-Geist which has lived on through the ages.
He is no captive at the chariot-wheel of academic
formalism ; and a careful study of his achieve-
ments demonstrates that he is a designer whose
talent, escaping lifeless formalism, rejecting re-
flected ideas and going straight to nature for its
inspiration, transmutes what he sees into a subtle
art. His analysis of natural forms is directed by a
searching intelligence of observation, and the re-
sults display an advanced modernity of thought,
grafted on to the grand old stem of German art-

Paris did not seduce
him to barter his inherit-
ance. That atmosphere,
saturated with the refine-
ments of artistic expres-
sion, has not weakened his
robust individuality. The
many-sided Paris world, as
Erler himself has said in a
generous tribute to his first
master, Brauer of Breslau,
brought him comprehen-
sion of what he had heard
from the lips of that pro-
found analyst. In the
light of all-pervading cul-
ture, the world grew
clearer before his eyes,
and he learned to seek
and choose in the veget-
able and animal creation
those forms which best
lend themselves to the
service of the arts.

Erler was born in 1868
at Frankenstein, a small
place near Breslau, the
Silesian capital. The
usual gymnasial schooling
finished, he went through
the course of art in the
Kunstschule of Breslau
under Professor Brauer,
and was subsequently his
private pupil.
by fritz erter During a journey to

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