Fritz Neumann (AKA Ric)

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Fritz Neumann, AKA Ric (German, 1928-2014) painter, sculptor and graphic artist primarily known for his oil paintings, etchings in color and B&W, drawings, woodcuts and sculptures—under both his own name and that of his pseudonym artist name of ‘Ric’and as such we are comfortable attributing the artwork to him.

There has been a lot of confusion over the years regarding the unknown artist named ‘Ric’ and also for the artist Fritz Neumann (Ric is the pseudonym of Fritz Neumann, German, 1928-2014), regarding the paper they used for their etchings which included the mysterious publisher blindstamp 'JCB' (J.C. smaller letters intertwined with a larger ‘B’ inside a shield/crest). Their respective artwork of more modern abstract, cubist and realist styles for their oil and watercolor paintings, as well as etchings have been bought and sold, and posted on various sites online in recent decades with no clear answer as to their identities. Even some specific blog sites devoted to, and about this unknown and collected artist of Ric, have popped up in recent years with people all trying to solve the mystery of this extremely elusive artist. We are now happy to say the mystery has been solved! See also the artist pages for Ric and Kunstverlag J.C. Blumenberg.

Fritz Neumann was born on October 27, 1928 in Berlin, Tempelhof, Germany. After leaving high school, Neumann worked as a stonemason intern in Minden, Germany from 1948-1949, where he was involved in restoration work on Minden Cathedral. From 1949-1953, he studied at the Hochschule für Bildende Künste in Braunschweig, Germany (Braunschweig University of Art), in the ‘Free and Applied Plastics’ department. From 1954-1957, he studied at the Universität Oldenburg, Germany (University of Oldenburg) and also worked as an art teacher. Fritz Neumann married Erika (née Rühe) Neumann (German, 1922-2019), also an artist, and they had two children to include Christoph Neumann and Andreas Neumann.

In 1971, Neumann became a member of the Bund Bildender Künstlerinnen Landesgruppe (BBK, Association of Visual Artists) in Oldenburg. He began exhibiting in the early 1970’s and over the course of his artistic career, he created a large number of paintings, prints, drawings and sculptures. From May, 16–June 6, 1982, Neumann particpated in the group exhibition of the BBK in the Stadtmuseum Oldenburg (Oldenburg City Museum), which included his wife listed as Erika Neumann-Rühe, on the occasion of the “Dokumentation zum 35jährigen Jubiläum des Bundes Bildender Künstler Landesgruppe Oldenburg” (“Documentation on the 35th anniversary of the Federation of Artists in the Oldenburg State Group”) with a sand-limestone sculpture. Fritz Neumann died on March 23, 2014 in Oldenburg with his funeral and burial held at the Auferstehungskirche (Church of the Resurrection), Oldenburg, Germany.

Circa the early 1960’s, Neumann had been working as a painter and graphic artist (Maler und Graphiker), as well as under his pseudonym artist name of ‘Ric’. During that time, he worked directly with the publisher and dealer Walter Tetzlaff of Kunstverlag J.C. Blumenberg, Import-Export (JCB, For: Josef Carl Blumenberg [German, 1880-1949]) located out of Heiligenhafen in Holstein, Germany for his etchings. Neumann’s etchings for both his real name and also that of his pseudonym ‘Ric’ were distributed through J.C. Blumenberg on nice wove paper that featured their ‘JCB’ shield blindstamp in the paper margin. Neumann also sold his etchings as well as his paintings (under both Neumann and Ric) directly to Walter Meibohm of Walter Meibohm Fine Arts (W.M.F.A.) in East Aurora, NY. According to our old invoice records, Neumann resided and operated from his Gartenfelder Strasse 132 h address in Berlin and also maintained a Haselhorst location (unknown address). In September of 1963, when Walter Meibohm was attempting to clear paintings purchased from Neumann (and also ones under his pseudonym of Ric), through U.S. customs, he requested that Neumann write a statement saying that they were indeed original oil paintings. Neumann promptly sent back a signed letter which indicated Neumann’s pseudonym alias of Ric, written as follows: “Berlin, Germany, 24. 9. 1963. [date written in blue ink], I, Fritz Neumann, declare that I am the painter of certain works of art: 9 oil paintings painted by me under the name of Ric – and I further declare these paintings are originals. [signed in blue ink] Fritz Neumann, [with artist stamp] Fritz Neumann, Maler und Graphiker, Berlin – Haselhorst, Gartenfelder Str. 132h, Tel. 38 48 57”. Mystery solved!

Letter of Attribution for the Artist Pseudonym of Ric:

Click to Supersize

 

Signature Examples for Fritz Neumann:


Fritz Neumann's Early Personal Logo from 1950’s and Later Logo used from c. 1960’s-80’s from Letterhead in our records.

Logo Used On Kunsterverlag J.C. Blumenberg ‘JCB’ Stationary:

 

‘JCB’ Shield Blindstamp Example:

Painting Example with Correct Signature for this Artist:

Click to Supersize

 

Signature Example for Neumann’s pseudonym of ‘Ric’:


 

Chronology:

1928- October 27, born in Berlin, Tempelhof, Germany.

From 1948-1949- After leaving high school, Neumann worked as a stonemason intern in Minden, Germany where he was involved in restoration work on Minden Cathedral.

From 1949-1953- He studied at the Hochschule für Bildende Künste in Braunschweig, Germany (Braunschweig University of Art), in the ‘Free and Applied Plastics’ department.

From 1954-1957, he studied at the Universität Oldenburg, Germany (University of Oldenburg) and also worked as an art teacher.

1972- Participated in a group show with other artists from the Bund Bildender Künstlerinnen Landesgruppe (Association of Visual Artists, [BBK]) in an exhibition by the Künstverein Nordenham (Nordenham Artists’ Association) in the Rathausturm (City Hall Tower), Nordenham, Germany.

From Jan. 20–Nov. 19, 1974- Participated in the group exhibition of the BBK “Junge Gruppe” (Young Group) of the Oldenburger Künstverein (Oldenburg Art Association) in the Augusteum Museum with a wooden sculpture, Oldenburg, Germany.

From Dec. 12, 1975–Jan. 11, 1976- Participated in a group exhibition of the BBK in the Stadtmuseum Oldenburg (Oldenburg City Museum) on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the Bundes Bildender Künstler Landesgruppe Oldenburg (Federal Visual Artist Oldenburg Group) with a sculpture and a pen & ink drawing, Oldenburg, Germany.

1976- Summer, participated in an exhibition in the Oldenburger Schlossgarten (Oldenburg Palace Gardens) with sculptures, Oldenburg, Germany.

1977- February, exhibited his “Plastische Ideen” (“Plastic Ideas”) in the control center of the Nordwest Zeitung Newspaper (NWZ) presshouse, Oldenburg, Germany.

From Dec. 3, 1978–Jan. 7, 1979- Participated in the “1. Grosse Oldenburger Kunstausstellung” (“1st Great Oldenburg Art Exhibition”) in the Stadtmuseum Oldenburg (Oldenburg City Museum) with two pen & ink drawings.

From May, 16–June 6, 1982- Particpated in the group exhibition (which included his wife, listed as Erika Neumann-
Rühe) of the BBK in the Stadtmuseum Oldenburg (Oldenburg City Museum) on the occasion of the “Dokumentation zum 35jährigen Jubiläum des Bundes Bildender Künstler Landesgruppe Oldenburg” (“Documentation on the 35th anniversary of the Federation of Artists in the Oldenburg State Group”) with a sand-limestone sculpture.

1983- January, participated in a group exhibition of the BBK in the Oldenburger Künstlerhaus (Oldenburg Artist House) located at Gartenstrasse 2 (Garden Street), Oldenburg, Germany.

From June 19–August 14, 1983- Participated again in the exhibition “Plastik im Freien” (“Plastic outdoors”) in the Oldenburger Schlossgarten (Oldenburg Palace Gardens), Oldenburg, Germany.

1984- Exhibited in a group show, Nordenhamer Woche (NorWo) in the Jahnhalle Cultural Center and Music Forum, with sculptures, portraits, landscape drawings, Nordenham, Germany.

1985- October, particpated in an exhibition of the Zusammengeschlossenen Niedersächsischen Künstler (Lower Saxony Artists) affiliated with the BBK in the Orangerie (Orangerie Building) with a sculpture, Hanover, Germany.

1987- May, participated in an exhibition in the chapel of the St. Lambertikirche (St. Lamberti Church) in Oldenburg, Germany.

1990- September, exhibited sandstone sculptures in the Artothek Oldenburg (Arthotek Art Gallery) in Oldenburg, Germany.

From September–November 5, 1995- Exhibited sculptures, drawings and gouaches at Kreismuseum Syke (The District Museum of Syke), Syke, Germany.

From February 4–March 4, 2001- The Stadtmuseum Oldenburg (Oldenburg City Museum) presented a retrospective exhibition titled, “Fritz Neumann: Zeichnungen, Malerei, Skulpturen 1949 - 2000 ; eine Retrospektive” (“Fritz Neumann: drawings, paintings, sculptures 1949 - 2000; a retrospective”), Oldenburg, Germany.

2014- March 23, Fritz Neumann died in Oldenburg, Germany.

(Compiled, translated and rewritten by Mark Strong of Meibohm Fine Arts, Inc., East Aurora, NY, 14052, meibohmfinearts.com, main sources:
de.wikiwand & de.wikipedia, “Neumann: German Names A-Z; Fritz Neumann (Künstler, 1928) (1928–2014), deutscher Maler, Graphiker und Bildhauer”; derschy.de, online translated biographical information, “Homepage von Jürgen DerschewskyBiografien Oldenburger Künstler: M-N; ” (Homepage of Jürgen Derschewsky Biographies of Oldenburg Artists); nwzonline.de, online obituary listing, “Fritz Neumann”; and too many others to list…)

 

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