Plate 2

The Way Home (Der Nachhausweg), plate from "Die Holle" (Hell), 1919

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The Way Home is the opening scene in Beckmann's acclaimed graphic cycle Die Holle (Hell), a dark and disturbing essay on the collapse of German society in the aftermath of the First World War (1914-18). Set in postwar Berlin, the allegorical scene features Beckmann as a man on his way home who suddenly encounters a horribly disfigured veteran under the light of a street lamp. Bearing the scars of war, the once proud soldier symbolizes the fate of Germany itself, broken and defeated. In the foreground, a menacing black dog warns of the dangers that lie ahead. Beckmann further enhances the tension of the scene by crowding his figures into a shallow pictorial space. Above all, The Way Home is a powerful denouncement of war.

The Way Home (Der Nachhausweg), plate from "Die Holle" (Hell)
Artist Life
Accession Number
(Galerie Cunther Franke, Munich); sold to MIA, 1967.
Catalogue Raisonne
Gall. 114; Gl.122
Curator Approved

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Plate 2