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Marianne von Werefkin - I Live What I See (Marianne von Werefkin - Ich lebe nur durch das Auge)

Marianne von Werefkin - I Live What I See
Scene from "Marianne von Werefkin - I Live What I See" (photo © Volkmar Erdmann/Neue Fira Film)

Marianne von Werefkin (1860 – 1938) came from Russian aristocracy. Her mother recognized her daughter’s painting talent early on and introduced her to Ilja Repin, the most important realistic painter of the time in Russia, who was to help Marianne find her own style. She went on to become known as “the Russian Rembrandt” but then suffered a hunting accident at the peak of her career, injuring her painting hand. At the age of 32, she met the painter Alexej Jawlensky and invested all of her efforts and fortune to make a great painter out of him. In Munich, she gathered politicians, high society, aristocrats and artists in her “pink salon”. For ten years, she devoted herself to furthering Jawlensky’s career and didn’t paint at all, but she did keep a diary, the Lettres a un Inconue, texts of enormous poetic power. After Jawlensky left her, she had a complete breakdown. Then her inner voice convinced her to return to painting . Her new style was a complete break with the past; beyond realism, clear and vibrant colors and provoking contrasts determined her wonderful compositions. She moved to Ascona and founded a new artists’ colony and went on to become one of the founders of modern art and the artists’ community Der Blaue Reiter.


Stella Tinbergen studied Audiovisual Media in Graz and Film in Vienna, followed by work as a production manager, continuity consultant, editor, and photographer. A selection of her films as a director includes: Elefantentraeume (short, 1991), Der verendete Krieg (documentary, 1994), Stundenglueck (documentary, 1996), Siegfried - Mein schizophrener Bruder (documentary, 1997), Haus des ewigen Lebens (documentary, 1999), Elias, das Zirkuskind (documentary, 2001), Der Fall Mischa E. (2005), and Marianne von Werefkin - Ich lebe nur durch das Auge (docu-drama, 2008).
Genre Art, History
Category Docu-Fiction
Year of Production 2008
Director Stella Tinbergen
Screenplay Christoph Honegger, Stella Tinbergen
Cinematography Alexander Sass
Marc Nordbruch
Cast Lena Stolze, Maike Probst, Jasmin Etezadzadeh
Producer Elke Peters
Production Company Neue Mira Film, in co-production with Stella Tinbergen, ZDF, 3sat/Mainz
Length 90 min
Format color
Original Version
 German
Subtitled Version English
Sound Technology Stereo
With backing from Kulturelle Filmfoerderung Mecklenburg-Vorpommern, Hessische Filmfoerderung

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