(Austrian, 1877–1959) was a printmaker, writer, and illustrator associated with Symbolism and Expressionism. Born in Bohemia, Kubin served as an apprentice to landscape photographer Alois Beer
, before enrolling in the Munich Academy in 1899. Though he didn’t finish his studies, during his time in Munich, he was exposed to works by some of the most important artists of the day, including Edvard Munch
, James Ensor
, and Henry de Groux
In particular, the aquatint technique used by Francisco de Goya
and printmaker, painter, and sculptor Max Klinger
influenced his early artistic development. His ink and wash drawings from this period are characterized by Symbolist themes and their inclusion of deformed figures and fantastical monsters. By 1910, he had limited his artistic output to pen and ink drawings, watercolors, and lithographs, and continued to create dark and macabre images.
In 1911, he became associated with the Expressionist group Der Blaue Riter, and exhibited works alongside Paul Klee
and Franz Marc
at the Galerie Der Sturm in Berlin in 1913.
Over the course of his career, Kubin illustrated more than 70 books by renowned authors, such as Fyodor Dostoyevsky and Edgar Allan Poe. In 1930, he became a member of the Akademie der Preußischen Künste in Berlin, and, in 1937, became a professor. From 1949 until his death, he was a member of the Bayrische Akademie der Schönen Künste. In 1951, he was awarded the Grand Austrian State Prize for Visual Art. He then went on to win an Austrian Medal for Science and Art in 1957.
Despite his success, the artist lived a relatively secluded life, and died at his home in Zwickledt at the age of 82.
Today his works are included in numerous international collections, including The Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Harvard University Art Museum, and the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.