Kokoschka made this portrait of the Viennese gynaecologist Ludwig Adler in 1914, when he had been moving in German Expressionist circles for a while. Presumably this portrait was a commission rather than a tribute to a friend. In the years 1913-1914, Kokoschka created a group of works with a heavy impasto, plastering the paint on the canvas in forceful movements and then working it with great sensitivity. These 'mental' portraits are invariably dark and the dominant colour is blue. The museum purchased this work in 1988, as its first example of pre-war non-Belgian Expressionism.
SizeH: 101 cm
MediumOil on canvas