Explore by
Living and Working
Big City Life
Under the Open Sky
Into a World of Pleasure
Collecting and Exhibiting

Live-in studio of Walter Gramatté (1926–1929)

Living and Working Network(ing)

“Rosario, the flat is here! It’s truly here! And paid for and approved by the housing office!”

Walter Gramatté to the art historian Rosa Schapire, 16 October 1926

After months of searching in vain, the time finally came in autumn 1926: Walter Gramatté found a flat in Berlin. Less than two years previously he had moved from Berlin to Barcelona with his wife, the composer Sophie-Carmen (Sonia) Gramatté. After just a few months, however, he had already decided to move back: he would rather starve in the company of his friends than live in Spain with a warmer climate and better security, he realised.

The Wilhelminian-era flat in Schöneberg that the Gramattés moved into that November had eight rooms – enough space for a studio as well as two music rooms. The only way that they could afford the flat at all with their low incomes was through the support of Grammaté’s father.

The artist eagerly set about designing their new home. He developed a colour concept for his home that not only included the walls and ceilings, but also tiled stoves, doors, window frames and floors. The walls of the studio glowed in a warm ochre yellow, while the piano room was a rich cobalt blue.

In 1939 – ten years after Walter Gramatté’s premature death – Erich Heckel recorded the colour scheme of this residence in a 28-page booklet using samples, sketches and descriptions. The documentation was commissioned by his widow, but it also serves as a posthumous memorial to the close friendship between the Brücke artist and Gramatté, who was 14 years his junior, that blossomed from 1919 onwards.

Isabel Fischer

Explore Berlin through the Eyes of the Brücke Artists
External content
I agree that contents of the Brücke-Museum may be displayed to me via the external provider api.mapbox.com. This means that personal data will be transferred to third party platforms. Brücke-Museum has no influence on this. You can read more about this in our privacy policy.