Franz Marc, The Wolves (Balkan War) [Die Wolfe; Balkankrieg], 1913Franz Marc often used animals in a natural environment as themes for his work. Prior to 1912, his works often featured animals such as horses and deer depicted in serene settings that were bright, light, and clear. The political conflicts and eventual breakout of World War I in Europe during this time led to a shift in Marc’s work. The Wolves (Balkan War) [Die Wolfe; Balkankrieg], painted in 1913, shows how the violence and terror of war changed the figures and setting depicted: here, wolves are represented as menacing figures that stalk through a landscape that is foreboding and bleak. The forms, both landscape and animals, are sharp and jagged, and the colors are dark except for the dying flower depicted in the lower right corner. This flower, the only light aspect of the work, is intentionally shown as fading away and symbolically represents the effects of the unceasing brutality and destruction of war.
This work is one of many from the Albright-Knox’s Collection featured in the exhibition Anselm Kiefer: Beyond Landscape that illustrates how artists have used landscape to explore a variety of themes. Here, Marc uses this work to explore how the political landscape and the natural world, both land and animals, can make a visual statement about a political situation or world event.
Franz Marc (German, 1880–1916). The Wolves (Balkan War) [Die Wolfe; Balkankrieg], 1913. Oil on canvas, 27 7/8 x 55 inches (70.8 x 139.7 cm). Charles Clifton, James G. Forsyth and George W. Goodyear Funds, 1951.

Franz Marc, The Wolves (Balkan War) [Die Wolfe; Balkankrieg], 1913

Franz Marc often used animals in a natural environment as themes for his work. Prior to 1912, his works often featured animals such as horses and deer depicted in serene settings that were bright, light, and clear. The political conflicts and eventual breakout of World War I in Europe during this time led to a shift in Marc’s work. The Wolves (Balkan War) [Die Wolfe; Balkankrieg], painted in 1913, shows how the violence and terror of war changed the figures and setting depicted: here, wolves are represented as menacing figures that stalk through a landscape that is foreboding and bleak. The forms, both landscape and animals, are sharp and jagged, and the colors are dark except for the dying flower depicted in the lower right corner. This flower, the only light aspect of the work, is intentionally shown as fading away and symbolically represents the effects of the unceasing brutality and destruction of war.

This work is one of many from the Albright-Knox’s Collection featured in the exhibition Anselm Kiefer: Beyond Landscape that illustrates how artists have used landscape to explore a variety of themes. Here, Marc uses this work to explore how the political landscape and the natural world, both land and animals, can make a visual statement about a political situation or world event.

Franz Marc (German, 1880–1916). The Wolves (Balkan War) [Die Wolfe; Balkankrieg], 1913. Oil on canvas, 27 7/8 x 55 inches (70.8 x 139.7 cm). Charles Clifton, James G. Forsyth and George W. Goodyear Funds, 1951.

Exploring Science Fiction: Man vs. ManFranz Marc’s The Wolves (Balkan War), 1913
There are only two more days until the Science Fiction Film Festival that will be presented in conjunction with Kelly Richardson: Legion during M&T FIRST FRIDAYS @ THE GALLERY this Friday, but we still have a few more themes to explore.
The Wolves (Balkan War) is based on the artist’s all too personal experience with the subject. War is a common representation of the theme of Man vs. Man and is often projected into the future in science fiction films—presenting a seemingly bleak outlook for man’s ability to resolve conflicts. Here, Franz Marc pits nature against itself, with the wolves serving as an allegory for mankind’s ability to inflict pain and suffering upon its fellow man.

Exploring Science Fiction: Man vs. Man
Franz Marc’s The Wolves (Balkan War), 1913

There are only two more days until the Science Fiction Film Festival that will be presented in conjunction with Kelly Richardson: Legion during M&T FIRST FRIDAYS @ THE GALLERY this Friday, but we still have a few more themes to explore.

The Wolves (Balkan War) is based on the artist’s all too personal experience with the subject. War is a common representation of the theme of Man vs. Man and is often projected into the future in science fiction films—presenting a seemingly bleak outlook for man’s ability to resolve conflicts. Here, Franz Marc pits nature against itself, with the wolves serving as an allegory for mankind’s ability to inflict pain and suffering upon its fellow man.