HANS HOFMANN was born in Weissenburg in Bavaria, Germany in 1880. He studied art in Munich and Paris, where he lived from 1904-14. He returned to Germany in 1914, and in 1915 he opened an art school in Munich. In 1930, Hofmann traveled to the United States, and from 1930-32 he taught at the University of California, Berkeley, and the Chouinard School of Art in Los Angeles. Because of the growing hostility toward intellectuals in Germany, Hofmann decided to remain in America.
In 1932, Hofmann moved to New York. He taught at the Art Students League, then opened the Hans Hofmann School of Fine Arts in 1934. Beginning in 1935, he held summer classes as part of the Hofmann School of Fine Arts in Provincetown, Cape Cod.
Hans Hofmann’s Provincetown years are widely recognized as an influential and pivotal moment in art history. As with all of the artist’s Provincetown landscapes, the work was painted on wood panel and often in plein air. Hofmann became a living bridge between the art of Europe’s vanguard and the young American artists through his own paintings and the classes he taught.
The magnificent, luminous, yet peaceful and serene atmosphere of Cape Cod influenced the significant body of work that is now seen as a composite of the colors of Fauvism and the structure of Cubism, movements in art he helped pioneer in Paris and Germany.
These Pre-War works celebrated the pure joy of painting and reflected the artist’s youthful and abundant enthusiasm that is the foundation and a signature characteristic of Hofmann’s paintings throughout his life. While masterpieces in their own right, these works were an indication of what would develop from the artist.