6_Railway Station by Hans_Baluschek

Railway StationHans Baluschek, 1929

Hans Baluscehek (1870-1935) was born in Germany, in an area that is now Polish territory. He sought to portray the lives of ordinary working people as they really were. His paintings, depicting the drudgery of life for workers in Berlin and elsewhere, reflected his political views. Critics considered his work different and new, although sometimes lacking in finesse and good taste. Despite being in his 40s when the First World War broke out, Baluschek volunteered for service and was posted as a reservist first to the Western and then to the Eastern Front. He survived the war, but the catastrophic aftermath for Germany shocked him, and he distanced himself from the political scene that created the Weimar Republic. In the latter part of his life he created only a few illustrations and a sober self-portrait from which he looks out at us with a thoughtful and solemn expression.


Hans Baluschek [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Wrap Up Your Painting

  • Is this painting depicting the era in which it was painted, or another era?
  • Did you think the person you chose to look at was isolated or interacting with the other people in the painting?
  • What event would you have liked to visit on this person?
  • How might it change the way the painter depicted the scene in your imagination?
  • How do you feel now you’ve completed this activity? If you enjoyed it, why not add more Look at Paintings audio guides to your week? And don’t forget, you can take these guides with you to your local gallery and try them whilst standing in front of ‘real life’ art