description of Rotes Villenquartier (Red Villa Quarter) by Paul Klee

In this small painting on a panel of cardboard that is fourteen inches tall and twelve inches wide, stylized houses, trees, and zigzagging paths have been rendered in various shades of red. The village appears to have been etched into the red paint, then outlined in fine black pen, adding to the painting’s dry, sketch-like appearance. The scene has been flattened, and lacks perspective, and resembles a fairy-tale map drawn by a child. The villas are represented by vertical rectangles housing grids of uniform windows, and triangular roofs topped with pompoms. Similarly, the trees are simply balls atop sticks, or line drawings of tall trunks with drooping branches. Three wide paths weave through the village, zigzagging past the haphazard houses and trees.

Paul Klee, Rotes Villenquartier (Red Villa Quarter), 1920
Paul Klee, Rotes Villenquartier (Red Villa Quarter), 1920; oil on cardboard, 14 3/8 in. x 12 1/2 in. (36.51 cm x 31.75 cm); Collection SFMOMA, Purchase
Paul Klee, Rotes Villenquartier (Red Villa Quarter), 1920

Artwork Info

Artwork title
Rotes Villenquartier (Red Villa Quarter)
Artist name
Paul Klee
Date created
oil on cardboard
14 3/8 in. x 12 1/2 in. (36.51 cm x 31.75 cm)
Date acquired
Collection SFMOMA
Permanent URL
Artwork status
Not on view at this time.

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