Riga: Neputns, 2009. 400 pp., 417 ill.
The painter Johann Walter (1869-1932), whose name has been Latvianised to Jānis Valters by several generations in his fatherland, together with his fellow students at the St. Petersburg Imperial Academy of Arts, Vilhelms Purvītis and Janis Rozentāls contributed to the rise of modern painting in Latvia at the turn of the 20th century. In 1906, however, the painter left his native Jelgava to Germany where he worked as Walter-Kurau in Dresden (1906-1916) and Berlin (1916/1917-1932). Against the changing background of countries, cities, periods and stylistic influences Walter's personality and art developed in a continuous interaction of painting, music, art theory and art pedagogy. For many years, he was "the most mysterious key figure of Latvian art". Since the late 1990s, numerous discoveries help to fill the previous gaps of knowledge and reconstruct the international story of the artist's life and work. The monograph has been awarded the Newspaper Diena Culture Prize 2009. The publication is available in Latvian bookshops, in the office of the Neputns Publishing House (Tērbatas Street 49/51-8, LV-1050 Riga, t. 67222647) and in the Neputns internet shop (www.neputns.lv/en/shop.php).