Autograph letter signed, and with original woodcut.
4to. ¾ p.
Feininger writes to Paul van Ostayen (1896-1926), Flemish avant-garde poet related to the Dada and Expressionist movements, who influenced modern literature in Belgium and the Netherlands. Towards the end of the First World War van Ostayen had gone to Berlin for political reasons, stayed for three years and befriended Feininger and other artists and literary figures. Feininger invites van Ostayen to join him and his wife on Boxing Day. "The five pictures have not arrived yet, but we mustn't wait for them in offer to be able to welcome you - Because of the pitiful state of transportation it is very uncertain now when they will arrive. We wish you a non too dreary Christmas [...] in the strange Big City! Only a very easy spirit would talk of 'Merry' now [...]" (transl. from the German original).
An original woodcut showing a church or cathedral in the upper left corner on this golden yellow sheet of onion skin paper. The woodcut is also suggestive of the Bauhaus 1919 Manifesto cover. The paper is fragile and tattered along right and left edges not affecting text.
In the year prior to this letter of 1918, Feininger had his first solo exhibit at Sturm Gallery in Berlin. He was Walter Gropius' first faculty appointment at the Bauhaus in Germany which Gropius founded in 1919. Feininger became the master artist in charge of the printmaking workshop.