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Dead City III (City on the Blue River III), 1911

Leopold Museum,
Oil, opaque color on wood
37.3×29.8 cm


  • Egon Schiele

    (Tulln 1890–1918 Vienna)

Currently on display at OG3
The motif of the Dead City first appeared in 1910 in connection with Egon Schiele’s (1890–1918) first longer stay in Český Krumlov/Krumau, where he spent the summer with his friends Erwin Osen (1891–1970) and Anton Peschka (1885–1940). The city of his mother’s birth, with its medieval character, would feature in his oeuvre like no other. The artist described the present small-scale panel painting, created in 1911, as that with the “most serious colors”. The palette is indeed reduced – the dark earthy tones of the roofs overrun the pale white house walls like moss and are only broken up by the cool, blackish-blue surface of the water surrounding the group of houses. In terms of motif, Schiele oriented his depiction on the structure of tightly packed houses crowding the sweep of the Vltava River, choosing the elevated castle plateau as his vantage point. The compacted conglomerate appears deserted; the few traces of human presence, like the washing on the line, make the absence of people felt even more keenly. The Dead City is an allegory of loneliness and isolation.


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Object data

  • Egon Schiele
Dead City III (City on the Blue River III)
Art movement
Oil, opaque color on wood
37.3×29.8 cm
Signed and dated upper right: EGON SCHIELE 1911
Credit line
Leopold Museum, Vienna, Inv. 460
Inventory access
Contributed to the Leopold Museum-Privatstiftung in 1994
Selection of Reference works
  • Rudolf Leopold: Egon Schiele. Gemälde, Aquarelle, Zeichnungen, hrsg. von Elisabeth Leopold, München 2020.
  • Tobias Natter: Egon Schiele, Sämtliche Gemälde 1909-1918, Köln 2017.
  • Wally Neuzil. Ihr Leben mit Egon Schiele, hrsg. von Diethard Leopold/Stephan Pumberger u.a., Wien 2015 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, 27.02.2015-01.06.2015).
  • Egon Schiele. Melancholie und Provokation, hrsg. von Elisabeth/Diethard Leopold, Wien 2011 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, 23.09.2011–19.04.2012).
  • Edvard Munch und das Unheimliche, hrsg. von Michael Fuhr, Wien 2009/2010 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, 16.10.2009-18.01.2010).
  • Der Lyriker Egon Schiele. Briefe und Gedichte 1910–1912 aus der Sammlung Leopold, hrsg. von Rudolf Leopold/Elisabeth Leopold, München 2008.
  • Egon Schiele Landschaften, hrsg. von Rudolf Leopold, München u.a. 2004 (Ausst. Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, 17.09.2004-31.01.2005).
  • Jane Kallir: Egon Schiele - The complete works. Expanded edition including a biography and a catalogue raisonné, New York 1998.
  • Otto Kallir: Egon Schiele. Oeuvre Catalogue of the Paintings, New York 1966.
  • Otto Nirenstein: Egon Schiele. Persönlichkeit und Werk, Berlin 1930.
Catalogue raisonne
  • J. Kallir 1990/1998: P213
  • Leopold 1972/2020: 182
  • Natter 2017: 69
  • O. Kallir 1966: 140
  • O. Kallir (Nirenstein) 1930: 94

If you have further information on this object, please contact us.


Provenance research
Leopold Museum i

Arthur Rössler (vor 1918); (1)
Alfred Spitzer, Wien (o.D.); (2)
Franz Friedrich Grünbaum, Wien (vor 1928-1939); (3)
Mathilde Lukacs, Brüssel (o.D.);
Klipstein & Kornfeld, Bern (1956);
Galerie St. Etienne (Otto Kallir), New York (1956-1958);
Dr. Rudolf Leopold, Wien (1958-1994); (4)
Leopold Museum-Privatstiftung, Wien (1994).

  1. Jane Kallir, Egon Schiele. The Complete Works, New York 1998, S. 305, Nr. 213.
  2. Tobias Natter, Die Welt von Klimt, Schiele und Kokoschka, Wien 2003, S. 224-233
  3. Sonja Niederacher, Fritz Grünbaum, Dossier vom 30.06.2010, S. 62; ÖStA, AdR, Ent.-u. ReAng., VVSt, VA 44.614, Fritz Grünbaum
  4. Niederacher, Grünbaum, S. 62f.; Diethard Leopold, Rudolf Leopold - Kunstsammler, Wien 2003, S. 92-95

For provenance related information, please contact us.