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At the Porte Saint-Denis (in Paris), n. d.

Leopold Museum,
Vienna © KARL HUBBUCH STIFTUNG/Städtische Galerie Karlsruhe 2023
Colored chalk, india ink on paper
44.8×53.5 cm


  • Karl Hubbuch

    (Karlsruhe 1891–1979 Karlsruhe)

Unfortunately not on display at the moment
His contemporaries described the painter and graphic artist Karl Hubbuch (1891–1979), who was born in Karlsruhe, where he also taught at the Academy of Fine Arts, as a cold-eyed observer with a talent for “contemporary social satire” and as a sensitive realist with moral ambitions. In his work on paper At the Porte Saint-Denis (in Paris) he uses sketch-like, cursory strokes in colored chalk and India ink to present a group of grotesque figures, unsparingly caricatured, who seem to be rushing past in front of a dynamic and exact architectural drawing that depicts the eponymous building. The work reveals his ability to reproduce with graphic exaggeration not only strange, individual idiosyncrasies, but also the social and political circumstances that favor and breed these characteristics. Hubbuch composes the group of people, positioned diagonally in the work, like a kaleidoscope of grotesque weirdness. The astute observer characterizes his types in rapid strokes and various styles – sometimes caricatural, sometimes naturalistic or reduced in a comic-book-like fashion. The figures are superimposed on the depiction of the triumphal architecture. In some segments the original motif of the triumphal arch built in honor of Louis XIV (1638–1715) in 1672 still shines through. As observers of the work, we are thus able to trace the creative process of drawing.

Object data

  • Karl Hubbuch
At the Porte Saint-Denis (in Paris)
n. d.
Art movement
Art after 1945
Graphic work
Colored chalk, india ink on paper
44.8×53.5 cm
Signed lower left: Hubbuch
Credit line
Leopold Museum, Vienna, Inv. 2226
Inventory access
Contributed to the Leopold Museum-Privatstiftung in 1994

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Provenance research
Leopold Museum i
Dr. Rudolf Leopold, Wien (o.D.);
Leopold Museum-Privatstiftung, Wien (seit 1994).

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