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THEMES, COLORS, FORMS. THE EXHIBITS

Berta Hummel's favourite activities as a child were painting and drawing. When Berta was fifteen, her parents fulfilled her greatest wish and presented her with her first oil color set.

Later she made use of a variety of techniques to find suitable forms for her large range of ideas. She quickly adapted to each technique, demonstrating repeatedly her many-sided talents. >>

Until she entered the convent she found her motifs close to home - her parents' home, the town and the surrounding countryside, her friends and neighbours, children playing nearby and people passing by.

Thematically her works can be divided into eight categories, as listed below. Her periods of creativity can also be placed in two time frames - her academic years and the time following her studies. The permanent exhibition in the museum shows works from each of these categories.

Portraits
Berta Hummel made a large number of portraits. They document her interest in and understanding of the people in her surroundings. She managed to paint not only a portrait, but a complete personality.
Floral and still-life paintings
Berta's flower and still-life paintings demonstrate again her ability to observe exactly. These paintings, mostly from her academic years in Munich, show accomplished ease, striking lines and vivid color contrasts, giving the pictures a highly personal note.
Children
Berta Hummel's child studies show her outstanding power of observation. They manage to describe the world of children both perceptively and affectionately. The lines drawn so sparingly in her late charcoal and pastel drawings made it easier to convert them into the well-known Hummel figurines.
Religious themes
Her entry into the convent marked a turning point, as she began to turn to more religious subjects in her work. There were many new tasks for her - pictures for religious services and Bible illustrations, sketches for textile designs (vestments, altar cloths and other textiles for church services), large sacred pictures and altar pieces.
Landscapes and town scenes
The majority of these works were done during her highly productive academic years in Munich (1927-31). The motifs - carefully composed town scenes and in-depth landscapes - were often from the town of Massing or from the Rott Valley. The colors show a well-balanced rhythm and compositions relate a fascinating interaction of straight lines an diagonals.
Caricatures
Unfortunately only a few of Berta Hummel's caricatures have survived, mainly small-sized graphics. Here the insight typical of her portraits combines with a subtle, often remarkably trenchant sense of humour. In the eyes of a girl aged 21 the world can perhaps seem rather a drastic place. Hummel's perception of the amusing aspect of certain situations sometimes foreshadows her later popular sketches of children.
Nude Studies
The study of the human figure is a classical subject of academic art. Berta Hummel's nudes belong to her study years in Munich. They fall into two main groups: anatomic and motion studies from nature, and a series of compositional sketches for the figures in her Stations of the Cross.
Applied Arts
The ideal of beautifying everyday objects by an artistic approach led to a new appreciation of craftmanship and applied art especially in Germany and England. Berta Hummel's works in this field illustrate serveral possibilities, including commercial signs and monogrammes, graphics for anniversary celebrations, and various designs for textiles from napery to children's mittens.

RECENT EXHIBITION

FORMER EXHIBITIONS