Winter 1966 • Vol. XXVIII No. 1 NonfictionJanuary 1, 1966 |

Kokoschka: Modern Old Master

The Vienna in which I grew to manhood was rife with café gossip about the "madman" Oskar Kokoschka, spread by those who still remembered the now world-famous painter as the Buergerschreck of the days before the first World War. Buergerschreck (literally: citizens' horror) was the unflattering epithet bestowed upon the young rebel by a reviewer who saw his disturbingly original offerings in a group show of 1908. Archduke Francis Ferdinand—the man whose assassination was to unleash the war—left the halls in a rage: "That fellow deserves to have every bone in his body broken!" In the same year, Kokoschka's expressionist play Murder, Hope of Women—a fervent expose of the brutal war between the sexes—provoked a scandal. Kokoschka, then only twenty-two but already notorious, followed the advice of friends who urged him to take a long trip abroad to avoid police prosecution. In 1937, when Vienna offered me the first chance to acquaint myself thoroughly with the work of O.K. (as

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In Defense of Dufy

By Alfred Werner

The Vienna in which I grew to manhood was rife with café gossip about the "madman" Oskar Kokoschka, spread by those who still remembered the now world-famous painter as the […]

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