Arts: THE SUNDAY PICTURE

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The Independent Culture
The summer of 1912 found the 28-year-old German painter, lithographer and writer Ludwig Meidner living in a cramped Berlin apartment, in a state of high fervour. "It was a strange and doom-laden time for me as no other ever was," he wrote in 1964, two years before his death. "I was charged with energy, full of mighty plans; I had faith in a magnificent future." The fractured energy of the apocalyptic landscapes which emerged from this period echoes Meidner's frenzied account of the creative process: "Bathed in sweat, I felt like a heavy-jowled hound careering along in a wild chase, mile after mile, to find his master." These paintings proved crucial in enhancing Meidner's public profile and remained his own most cherished works, strengthening his links with the Expressionist movement. A prime example is Apokalyptische Landschaft (above), whose vivid, destructive images reflect a Germany in political and cultural turmoil, as well as seeming to presage the physical carnage of the First World War. It's been hidden for many years in a private English collection, but it can now be seen at Christie's until Wed, when it is expected to sell for an estimated pounds 70,000-100,000. ("German and Austrian Art 96": Christie's, SW1, 0171 839 9060; viewing today 2-5, Mon & Tues 9-4.30; free.)

COMPETITION

DETAILS No 307

IN WHICH painting by which painter can you find this rich texture?

DETAILS 305 came from Richard Dadd's Bacchanalian Scene (1862), painted when the artist had for many years been confined as a lunatic. The picture is in a private collection.

The first three correct entries drawn were from: Mary and Andrew Strong of Newport, Gwent; Eric Carte of Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire; and Lynn Telford of Newcastle-upon-Tyne.

Each will receive a bottle of champagne, as will the winners of this week's competition. Answers on a postcard (to arrive by Wed 9 October) to: DETAILS 307, Arts Desk, Independent on Sunday, 1 Canada Square, Canary Wharf, London E14 5DL.

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