THEODOR BAIERL (1881-1932)
MUNICH SECESSION (1892-1913)
The Three Graces (Germany, 1920)
Oil on Panel
Signed Theodor Baierl bottom right
Description / Expertise
Theodor Baierl studied at the Munich Academy under Franz von Stuck and Martin Feuerstein. Baierl was an artist born out of his time. He passionately believed in the art, love sonnets, and archaic harmonies of the Medieval era, which in turn became the essence of his paintings. Though his pure colours and attention to detail mirror the art of the Quattrocento, Baierl was no copyist of the old masters. His compositions are very much a product of his own mind, and it is for this reason that underlying these faux old master works can be found the symbolism of the Munich secession. Though not commenting directly on modern society, the art is a product of his time, and his idealisation of the past suggests a dissatisfaction with modern Germany and the monumental upheaval of the First World War.
The Graces, Aglaia (Splendour), Euphrosyne (Mirth), and Thalia (Abundance), were daughters of Zeus and the Oceanid Eurynome. They personified grace, charm and beauty.
In the Hellenistic era, the Graces were frequently depicted as nudes, a tradition continued by Roman artists. Baierl follows the post-classical model which depicts the graces, semi-nude and dancing in a circle.