Johannes Greenberg (1887–1951)


The latter half of the 1930’s is considered the high point of Johannes Greenberg’s creative work. At that time he was an artist in his fifties. He had begun his studies in art in 1904 already at Ants Laikmaa’s recently opened studio school. He later studied further in Berlin, Latvia and Munich and worked for years in Moscow. Greenberg did not return to Estonia until 1920 and did not start participating more actively in exhibitions until some ten years later. After a springtime bus trip to Spain, where nature and the works of El Greco and Goya inspired him, an "intense period of searching" began in his work according to researchers of Greenberg, which lasted from 1936 to about 1944. The depiction of half-length figures became prevalent, whereas a woman or group of women who somewhat melancholically or plaintively look off into the distance was a frequent subject.