Adam and Little Eve

Paul Klee (German (born Switzerland), Münchenbuchsee 1879–1940 Muralto-Locarno)
Watercolor and transferred printing ink on paper mounted on cardboard
16 5/8 × 11 3/4 in. (42.2 × 29.8 cm)
Credit Line:
The Berggruen Klee Collection, 1987
Accession Number:
Not on view
In this watercolor, Klee somewhat expanded the story of the creation of man. His Eve, after growing from Adam's rib, stays right there. She also remains a child. Evchen ("Little Eve") looks like a schoolgirl with flaxen hair tied in a braid. Adam is a broad-faced, grown man who sports earrings and a mustache. By placing the figures against a shallow ground with a reddish curtain, Klee seems to set the oddly matched pair on a puppet-theater stage.
Inscription: Signed (lower right): Klee; dated and inscribed on cardboard (lower left): 1921/12 Adam und Evchen
the artist, Munich (1921–ca. 1922; his gift, probably in spring 1922, to Jawlensky); Alexej von Jawlensky, Wiesbaden (ca. 1922–probably until d. 1941); probably his son, Andreas Nesnakomoff Jawlensky, Switzerland (from 1941); Richard Doetsch-Benziger, Basel (until d. 1958; his estate, from 1958, sold to Kornfeld); Eberhard W. Kornfeld, Bern (until 1962; sale, Klipstein & Kornfeld, Bern, May 24, 1962, no. 126, sold to Granz); Norman Granz, London, Breganzona, Switz., Los Angeles, and Geneva (1962–at least 1970); sale, Sotheby's, New York, November 2, 1978, no. 141, sold to Berggruen; Heinz Berggruen, Paris and Berlin (1978–87; his gift to MMA)

Kunsthalle Mannheim. "Zwei Künstlerphantasten. Paul Klee und Alfred Kubin," November 23, 1924–January 10, 1925, checklist no. 45.

Geneva. Galerie D. Benador. "Paul Klee. Aquarelles et dessins," July 1959, no. 7 (dated 1925).

Paris. Musée National d'Art Moderne. "Paul Klee," November 25, 1969–February 16, 1970, no. 46 (lent by Norman Granz, London).

Paris. Berggruen et Cie. "Paul Klee. Les années 20," May–July 1971, no. 15.

Cologne. Kunsthalle. "Paul Klee. Das Werk der Jahre 1919–1933. Gemälde, Handzeichnungen, Druckgraphik," April 11–June 4, 1979, no. 36 (lent by a private collection, Zurich).

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Paul Klee: The Berggruen Klee Collection in The Metropolitan Museum of Art," May 6–July 31, 1988, unnumbered cat. (p. 131).

Kunsthalle Tübingen. "Paul Klee: Die Sammlung Berggruen im Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York und im Musée National d'Art Moderne, Paris," January 22–April 16, 1989, unnumbered cat. (p. 129).

London. Tate Gallery. "Paul Klee: The Berggruen Collection in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York and the Musée National d'Art Moderne, Paris," May 17–August 13, 1989, unnumbered cat. (p. 129).

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Paul Klee: Figures and Faces," August 23–November 16, 1997, no catalogue.

Kunstmuseum Bern. "Die Blaue Vier. Feininger, Jawlensky, Kandinsky, Klee," December 5, 1997–March 1, 1998, no. 114.

Düsseldorf. Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen. "Die Blaue Vier. Feininger, Jawlensky, Kandinsky, Klee," March 28–June 28, 1998, no. 114.

Staatliche Museen zu Berlin. Sammlung Berggruen. "Klee aus New York: Hauptwerke der Sammlung Berggruen im Metropolitan Museum of Art," June 4–October 18, 1998, no. 10.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Klee Figures," October 5, 2001–March 10, 2002, no catalogue.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Klee Creatures," December 12, 2003–March 14, 2004, no catalogue.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Klee: His Years at the Bauhaus (1921–1931)," November 19, 2004–April 3, 2005, no catalogue.

Santander. Fundación Marcelino Botín. "Paul Klee: Colección Berggruen," July 7–September 24, 2006, unnumbered cat. (p. 81).

Rome. Fondazione Memmo. "Paul Klee: La collezione Berggruen," October 11, 2006–January 7, 2007, no. 20.

Berlin. Neue Nationalgalerie. "Das Universum Klee / The Klee Universe," October 31, 2008–February 8, 2009, unnumbered cat. (p. 291).

Paris. Centre Pompidou, Musée national d'art moderne, Galerie 2. "Paul Klee. L'ironie à l'oeuvre," April 6–August 1, 2016, unnumbered cat. (p. 106).

G. W. "Sale Room Prices: Switzerland." Apollo 77 (August 1962), p. 504, colorpl. V.

Felix Klee. Paul Klee par lui-même et par son fils Felix Klee. Ed. Bernard Gheerbrant. Enl. ed. (1st ed., German, 1960; 2nd ed., English, 1962). Paris, 1963, ill. opp. p. 40 (color) (not in German or English eds.).

Françoise Cachin-Nora in Paul Klee. Exh. cat., Musée national d'Art Moderne. Paris, 1969, p. 49, no. 46, ill., notes that there is a preparatory ink drawing for this work (formerly collection Sir Edward and Lady Hulton; now Kunstmuseum Bern; Helfenstein and Rümelin 1999, no. 2632).

Jean-Louis Ferrier. Paul Klee: Les années 20. Paris, 1971, ill. pp. 50–51 and n. p. (color and bw).

Sabine Rewald. Paul Klee: The Berggruen Klee Collection in The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Exh. cat., The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York, 1988, pp. 130–31, 277, 317, ill. (color and bw) and front cover (color), notes that although the title of the Klipstein & Kornfeld 1962 sale catalogue states that it is from the archive and collection of J. B. Neumann, this work was not part of Neumann's collection.

Donat de Chapeaurouge. Paul Klee und der christliche Himmel. Stuttgart, 1990, pp. 71–72, pl. 28.

Josef Helfenstein in The Blue Four: Feininger, Jawlensky, Kandinsky, and Klee in the New World. Ed. Vivian Endicott Barnett and Josef Helfenstein. Exh. cat., Kunstmuseum Bern. Cologne, 1997, pp. 94, 95 n. 72, p. 350, no. 114, figs. 34, 47 (1933 photo of this work in Jawlensky's apartment), ill. p. 157 (color), suggests various hypotheses for this picture's acquisition by Jawlensky: as an exchange for Jawlensky's painting "Saviour Face", along with three other Klee works, in 1921 or 1922; as a purchase by Jawlensky in 1922; or as a gift from Klee in 1925; adds, however, that Klee's handwriting in his oeuvre catalogue indicates that he noted Jawlensky's ownership in 1922; catalogued in the exhibition checklist as a gift from Klee to Jawlensky "probably in spring 1922 (exchange)".

Josef Helfenstein and Christian Rümelin, ed. Paul Klee: Catalogue Raisonné. Ed. Paul Klee Foundation, Museum of Fine Arts, Berne. Vol. 3, 1919–1922. New York, 1999, pp. 262, 272, no. 2603, ill. pp. 262, 279 (color).

Christina Thomson in The Klee Universe. Ed. Dieter Scholz and Christina Thomson. Exh. cat., Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin. Ostfildern, 2008, pp. 285, 355, ill. p. 291 (color).

Katja Förster and Stefan Frey, ed. "In inniger Freundschaft": Alexej Jawlensky, Paul und Lily Klee, Marianne Werefkin. Der Briefwechsel. Zurich, 2013, p. 145 n. 3, pp. 266, 273, 288, 296 n. 8, ill. pp. 195 (installation photo), 272, 288 (color), state that it was a gift from Klee to Jawlensky, probably in spring 1922; note that Jawlensky lent this picture to Exh. Mannheim 1924–25.

Angela Lampe in Paul Klee. L'ironie à l'oeuvre. Ed. Angela Lampe. Exh. cat., Centre Pompidou, Musée national d'art moderne, Galerie 2. Paris, 2016, pp. 29, 302, ill. p. 106 (color).