Magnet Ferdinand Hodler - The Woodcutter
This magnet is published on the occasion of the exhibition "Swiss Modernities (1890-1914)" at the Orsay Museum.
Ferdinand Hodler (1853-1918)
Der Holzfäller (The Woodcutter), 1910 - Oil on canvas - H.130; W.101cm © Musée d'Orsay
In April 1908, the Banque Nationale Suisse commissioned Ferdinand Hodler to illustrate the new 50 and 100 franc banknotes, which were to take the subject of rural labour. For the 50 franc note, the artist chose the theme of the woodcutter. When these were issued however, Hodler was disappointed by the effect the reduction in scale had had in depriving the figure of its dynamic impact. Besides this, realistic ornamentations tended to distort the ghostly landscape of the painting which had been designed to match the expressionism of the figure.