The Online Otto Dix Project

A German Artist and Print Maker

Self-portrait as a Prisoner of War
Selbstbildnis als Kriegsgefangener

Year: 1947


As Nazi Germany collapsed, Otto Dix was drafted into Volkssturm along with other old men and young boys. He was promptly captured and ended the war in a French POW camp. While in the camp, he was granted access to art materials which he used to paint a triptych for the prison chapel. While he did create work inside the camp, this portrait was done from memory after his release. Prisoner Dix is an old man with a deeply lined face, troubled by his circumstances. His stoic demeanor is contrasted with that of the Fool behind him.

During this period, he undergoes stylistic changes. His brush strokes become shorter and end more abruptly. The overview is more shredded and porous. Dix was trying to remain relevent as another human tragedy brought its influence to bear on 20th Century art. 

Provenance: Public Museum

  • Galerie der Stadt, Stuttgart (on loan)
  • Löffler 1947/2 
  • Oil on pressed fiberboard

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  • Sabrina Sohn

    I was wondering if the subject matter himself commissioned the artist to draw the doctor or not? thanks