Rising horse, Werkstatte Hagenauer Vienna, ca. 1935, brass patinated
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With this sculpture Werkstatte Hagenauer shows a horse in the characteristic momentum of elevation. The animal’s body clearly shows its movement, while the tense hind legs stand firmly on the ground and the raised forelegs seem to reach out powerfully. The direction in which it seems to be about to rise into a levade can be seen from the crotch position and the head turned to the left.
The scene receives additional dynamics by the curved, ascending wooden plinth, which reminds of a hill. The animal’s mane-less head, reduced to a few features, signals the moment of supreme concentration through its laid-back ears and watchful gaze. This brass sculpture captivates with its playful and elegant character.
Werkstätte Hagenauer – stylistic evolution and importance
Today, the Werkstatte Hagenauer is rightfully among the most important Austrian Arts & Crafts manufacturers of the 20th century. The clear, strict formal language combined with dynamic poses and the usage of brass, nickel-plated, patinated or bare, along with copper, alpaca and exotic wood shows a high level of recognition.
However, it took the siblings Karl and Franz Hagenauer quite some time until they developed their own unique style. Karl and Franz both attended the Vienna School of Arts & Crafts and studied under Josef Hoffmann, Oskar Strnad, Anton Hanak and Dagobert Peche.
Until the closure of the Werkstatte Hagenauer on December 30, 1987, art objects of outstanding quality were still being produced. The siblings Karl and Franz Hagenauer strongly contributed in coining the term „design“ through their legacy and are surely among the most influential Austrian artists of the 20th century.
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