The great grandson of the artist contacted us with some interesting biographical information about Friedrich Johannes Grunder. He did not know F. Grunder personally, but inherited some of his art which he deeply admires and has tried to learn more about Grunder from other elderly family members.
Here are some excerpts of the letter he kindly sent to us:
“PROFESSOR F Grunder was a well off man with a large estate. He was a teacher and a scientist. He made his own wine, did lots of work with agriculture and enjoyed his art. I am not sure how many children he had but believe [there were eight]. “
“…He was a very clever and respected man and very political (favouring extreme leftism). He moved from Switzerland to Bournemouth, England somewhere in the sixties and we have lots of further art featuring Greenwich (for some reason). “
” I have art mainly from practice or rough sketch books showing places all over the world but mainly churches and people (who look Jewish). Stories are that he risked a lot helping Jews during WW2 (and helping them hide). “
“…He wanted to travel, he had always wanted to see New York but we do have a letter from New York which says in German (though my German is not fluent) that he was dissapointed to have finally got where he wanted to and found it such an uninteresting place. [His daughter] was convinced it was this dissapointment which finally let any illness get the better of him. “
F. Grunder is said to have suffered from mental illness later in life – his grandson believes it may have been Alzheimers disease.
He has also heard that as F. Grunder became ill, he started ruining his art by drawing black gulls in the sky.
Village Antiques is always delighted to learn more about the artists in our pages and to share this with others via this website!
Photos of Grunder provided by his great grandson