© President and Fellows of Harvard College
Gallery Text

Hodler executed this drawing in connection with an allegorical painting titled Eurhythmie, which depicts old men in profile, walking with great composure along a path strewn with leaves and pebbles, on their way to death. Rather than depending on exalted attitudes or conventional poses, Hodler wanted to explore the potential of the human body and its gestures to express the idea of pantheistic worship. “When a number of human bodies are animated by the same idea, stimulated in the same way, they form a monumental whole from which a single idea naturally emerges,” he noted.

Identification and Creation
Object Number
Ferdinand Hodler, Swiss (Berne 1853 - 1918 Geneva)
Two Old Men
Other Titles
Alternate Title: Two Saints
Work Type
c. 1895
Physical Descriptions
Watercolor and graphite, squared in graphite, on cream wove paper
actual: 29 x 21 cm (11 7/16 x 8 1/4 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • Signed: graphite, l.r.: F Hodler
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Bequest of Grenville L. Winthrop
Accession Year
Object Number
European and American Art
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Exhibition History

19th-Century German Drawings and Watercolors, Busch-Reisinger Museum, Cambridge, 07/01/1981 - 08/31/1981

From the Realists to the Expressionists: Works on Paper by Central European Artists from 1870 to 1918, Busch-Reisinger Museum, Cambridge, 03/14/1983 - 04/29/1983

19th-Century Drawings from the Permanent Collection, Busch-Reisinger Museum, Cambridge, 09/01/1983 - 10/09/1983

Flowers of Evil: Symbolist Drawings, 1870–1910, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 05/21/2016 - 08/14/2016

This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of European and American Art at am_europeanamerican@harvard.edu