Kirchner | The Red Tower in Halle

Title: The Red Tower in Halle
Artist: Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, German.
Year: 1915
Medium: Oil on Canvas
Style: Expressionism
Notes & Analysis of the Artwork

Shows the market square of the city, Halle Germany.

Kirchner was stationed here during military service in the spring of 1915.

The Center of the square and image is a height exaggerated 15th-century bell tower. 

To left is the Marienkirche

  • The main protestant church in Hesse Germany.
  • noticeable by its four towers.
  • Of a neo-gothic design.

Presents a deserted scene illuminated by a pale blue light.

The painting showcases many shades of light upon dark surfaces in bold colors.

Red luminous stream evokes visualization of heavy car traffic.

  • Heavy traffic flowed through the square, now only trams traverse the square.
  • The city looks and seems deserted right before a huge storm.

The huge cloud of smoke in the background foretells military action.

Colors of importance:

White of the clouds, tells of incoming doom.

  • Proximity to the deep black of the towers connects it to loss of hope.

Black also adds to the exaggeration of the tower’s scale.

  • Black shows the darkness of Kirchner saw in Germany’s military structure.

Red and its distinctive tone sets the mood

  • It navigates and delivers the piece.
  • Kirchner’s representation of the military treatment.
  • Its barbarisms and actions.

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