© President and Fellows of Harvard College
Identification and Creation
Object Number
Louise Rösler, German (Berlin, Germany 1907 - 1993 Hamburg, Germany)
The Room
Other Titles
Original Language Title: Das Zimmer
Work Type
Physical Descriptions
Collage of cut printed paper, metal foil, cellophane, watercolor, and graphite on wove paper
22.8 × 14.5 cm (9 × 5 11/16 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • Signed: l.l., in black ink: Louise Rösler
  • inscription: l.r., in black ink: 51
Museum Atelierhaus Rösler-Kröhnke, sold; to the Busch-Reisinger Museum, 2017.
Acquisition and Rights
Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Busch-Reisinger Museum, Purchase through the generosity of Renke B. Thye
Accession Year
Object Number
Modern and Contemporary Art
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Label Text: Inventur—Art in Germany, 1943–55 , written 2018
With the introduction of the deutsche mark to Germany’s western zones in 1948, postwar shortages and rationing ended and stores filled almost overnight. The Shop Window (2017.123) reflects this miraculous availability and variety of goods through a profusion of colorful patterns. Faced with the continued scarcity of traditional artistic materials after the war, Rösler began creating small collages from detritus in 1950. Candy wrappers dropped by soldiers in the streets of American-occupied Königstein were especially treasured material. Drawing upon her training under Fernand Léger, Hans Hofmann, and Karl Hofer, Rösler took a painterly and personal approach to the medium: in her abstract composition Street (2017.125), shiny and matte surfaces and monochromatic and multicolored papers are juxtaposed to evoke the vibrancy and motion of the city; in The Room, black and white patterns surround a central female figure, suggesting textiles in a cramped interior space similar to Rösler’s own living situation.

Publication History

Dr. Katrin Arrieta and Kornelia von Berswordt-Wallrabe, Louise Rösler zum 100. Geburtstag, Museum Atelierhaus Rösler-Kröhnke (Kühlungsborn, Germany, 2007), p. 48, ill. (color)

Claire Messud, "German Art, Out of the Rubble", New York Review of Books (New York, NY, 2018)

Lynette Roth and Ilka Voermann, Inventur—Art in Germany, 1943–55, exh. cat., Harvard Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2018), pp. 315-317, cat. no. 42.2, ill. (color)

Exhibition History

Inventur—Art in Germany, 1943–55, Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 02/09/2018 - 06/03/2018

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 Modern and Contemporary Art at am_moderncontemporary@harvard.edu