The sketches in oils are among the most spontaneous and insistent works of Werner Berg’s early years. Their figurative subjects are hardly recognizable, and the images’ borders are indistinct. In pure color chords, these serially produced sketches establish the later paintings’ colorism, whereby they often seem to anticipate Abstract Expressionism.
The small oil sketches do not model the plasticity of their subjects: the artist strives instead to modulate their color surfaces through the brush’s ductus. Spatial depth layering is given less weight, and color space replaces light space, as it did in the work of the Fauves beginning around 1905.