Joseph Sattler (1867-1931)
Cover for the magazine 'Pan'
Museum no. E.3099-1938
The German art magazine Pan was a lavish celebration of Art Nouveau. It took its name from the Greek God of nature, who is depicted here in Sattler's cover for the first edition. His goat-like form leers from the background against a sinister red sky. The scene is dreamlike, and suffused with mythological imagery and symbolism.
In the foreground a flower grows, its stamens coiling into the lettering of the title. The petals are square and curled at the edges to suggest scrolls of paper, and each bears an image of Pan's face. There is nothing natural about this flower. It is not nature, but words and images that bloom from the well-tended earth. In using this imagery, Sattler may be hinting at the role of the magazine in cultivating new art and literature.
The art magazines were central to Art Nouveau's dominance across Europe. This was particularly the case in Germany, where both Pan and Die Jugend contributed to the spread of the new style. The latter lent its name to the German name for Art Nouveau, Jugendstil.
This print can be found in Prints and Drawings Study Room box TOPIC 21a.