Winner's Auctions No. 111

Important Historic Documents, Haskalah, Einstein, Seforim, Manuscripts and Letters from Rabbis and Rebbes

December 11, 2018
Opening $7,000
Estimate $20,000 - $25,000
Sold for $111,630
Including buyer's premium

Einstein's portrait - etching. On the etching, Einstein wrote, "Happy is the transitory whose countenance is snatched away by the pitiless master hand of time!"

In February 1923, Einstein visited the Land of Israel, and Struck invited him to visit his home on the Carmel. In a letter sent to a friend, Struck described how he was harsh with the great physicist, who had won the Nobel Prize a year earlier: The visit was planned for Friday, and Struck, who was a mitzvah-observant Jew, warned Einstein to take into account the time Shabbat begins, and Einstein obeyed. "So he walked the difficult path and up the ascent to the Carmel on foot, in very unpleasant weather. His consideration and efforts were greatly appreciated by all of us." Einstein took it in good humor, "For Struck I ruined my trousers," he said. And Struck wrote, "I immediately removed the chastised man's coat and dressed him in my beautiful housecoat that I had received from my wife."

Herman Struck [1876-1944] was the leading Jewish artist who immigrated to Israel. He contributed more than any other artist to the development of the graphic arts in the Land of Israel. Honorable status is reserved for him in Israel's cultural life. He was born to an Orthodox family in Berlin. At the beginning of his career as an artist, he became one of the most important Jewish artists in Germany in the wake of his publication of the famous portrait of Theodor Herzl, [Portrait of Theodor Herzl] given his deep impression of Herzl's image following their 1903 meeting in Vienna. In 1908, he published The Art of Etching, which detailed the procedure for printing the etchings. The book was very successful, and made its author the leading name in the field of etching in the entire art world. His students included Chagall, Max Leibermann, Jozef Israëls. Struck was an enthusiastic Zionist activist, and in 1922 he immigrated to the Land of Israel and built his home on the Carmel. He continued visiting his studio in Berlin on an annual basis until 1933, when he began dealing with founding the new Bezalel in the Land of Israel.

1 leaf, paper. Etching: 20x14 cm. Leaf size: 24x17 cm. 3 lines and a signature in Einstein's handwriting, in pencil, and also Struck's signature in pencil.

Fine-very fine condition. Two tiny stains beside the etching.

Prof. Albert Einstein