About this artwork

This work may be a self-portrait. Klee had very large eyes, a domed head and a closely cropped beard. The artist made many puppets for his son, and this figure, with its arms flopping down and tilted head, appears to have been inspired by a puppet. The figure was created by a process of oil transfer, rather like making a carbon copy. The artist used a sharp instrument to draw the outline of the figure on a sheet painted with special oil paint on the underside. The black smudges show where Klee's hand rested on the paper.

see media
  • title:
    Gespenst eines Genies [Ghost of a Genius]
  • accession number:
    GMA 2106
  • artist:
  • gallery:
  • object type:
  • subject:
  • materials:
    Oil transfer and watercolour on paper laid on card
  • date created:
    1922
  • measurements:
    50.00 x 35.40 cm (framed: 61.90 x 80.30 x 3.80 cm)
  • credit line:
    Purchased 1979
  • photographer:
    Antonia Reeve

Paul Klee

Paul Klee