Abstraktion und Einfuehlung by Wilhelm Worringer (1908) first edition book


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Wilhelm Worringer - Abstraktion und Einfuehlung.

Muenchen: Piper, 1908. First edition. First printing. (A like-named but somewhat less substantial dissertation was printed by Artur Weese a year earlier in Bern). Hardcover. 8vo. Black raised ridge moire-effect binding. 118 pp. An unprepossessing copy denuded of its spinal cloth, severely rubbed and foxed, and otherwise disrespected on every hygienic front. First preliminaries separated (now tipped in) with separation of covers incipient. Extensive annotation and underlining to text. This copy belonged to German-American art critic Heinz Kusel, a personal friend of the author. EXTREMELY SCARCE.

“FEW DOCTORAL DISSERTATIONS have come to occupy as important a place in the history of modernist art and crit­icism as Wilhelm Worringer's Abstraction and Empathy. The young German scholar, born the same year as Pablo Picasso, completed the dissertation in 1906 at the age of twenty-five. This was one year before Picasso created Les Desmoiselles d'Avignon, a work with which Abstraction and Empathy shares certain interests-particularly the interest in primitive, non-Western art forms. When the disserta­ tion was published that year in a private edition, as acade­ mic custom required, the book excited sufficient intellec­ tual interest in Germany for the Munich publisher Reinhard Piper to bring out a trade edition in 1908. By 1910 that edition had gone into a third printing, and by then the author's ideas about abstraction in art were the subject of intense discussion in the Munich-based Blaue Reiter circle of Franz Marc and Vasily Kandinsky.” —Hilton Kramer

Note: This book is in German.

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