Note card Beckmann's "Carnival Mask, Green, Violet, Pink"
Max Beckmann (German, 1884 - 1950)
"Carnival Mask, Green, Violet, Pink (Columbine)," 1950

In his so-called Columbine, Beckmann combines two familiar strands of his imagery: theatre and carnival. Yet, represented here is not the character of the commedia dell'arte, a protagonist in a pictorial fiction, but a woman masquerading in that role for carnival. In the inscription on the curtain behind her, partially covered by her cape, Hans Belting has convincingly seen the last three letters of the word "exit." She therefore probably symbolized not death itself, the moment of the soul's release, but the act of dying, the last experience to be endured within time. With her cards she announces the concluding scene in Beckmann's "theater of the world," the last, difficult role he must perform before the final exit. Beckmann's own title for the work would underline this meaning: "Fastnacht" connotes more precisely than the English "carnival" the significance of the ancient ritual. It is the night before the Lenten fast, the final masquerade before the day of ashes.

Box of ten 5 x 7" note cards with envelopes

Item #012623