ADOLF HITLER'S SKETCH OF HIS MUNICH OPERA HOUSE
A superlative Adolf Hitler piece, his original sketch for proposed new opera house for Munich, hand-drawn and colored by Hitler, given his confidante and advisor on architectural matters, ALBERT SPEER (1905-1981), the Minister of Armaments and War Production, later convicted of war crimes at Nuremburg. The detailed sketch was executed by Hitler on an 11.25 x 8.25 in. sheet of lined paper. It depicts an grandiose structure with a large arch at center, large columns at right, and smaller columns to the left, in the monolithic style favored by Hitler. Hitler has hand-colored the arch in red, and parts of the rest of the structure in blue indelible pencil. The drawing has been mounted at the corners and extreme margins to heavy stock with one 1 in. corner tear, else fine condition. The sketch is accompanied by an unshakeable letter of provenance from Albert Speer to the father of our consignor, 1p. large 4to., Heidelberg, . It reads, in part: 'I declare that this sketch was made by Adolf Hitler in my presence. Hitler had planned a grand boulevard for Berlin, which was to surpass all others in the world...'Inside the Third Reich'...also includes an illustration of the grand boulevard at the eastern point of which the Opera House was to be built...Hitler had drawn plans for the Opera House over a period of fifty years. But they hardly changed in detail. This sketch shows his intention: As a large arch, high staircase was to lead to the entrances. The area surrounding the arch was to be faced as mosaic in reddish colouring. Left, the lateral approach roads and a low colonnade which was to be the base for the entrances to the dress and upper circles. Above this, the area for the foyers for the first and second floor. In the sketch on the right, Hitler has drawn a variation according to which a portico was to form the architecture. But he dismissed this alternative in favour of the idea on the left, because it offered greater scale in comparison to the arch. Behind, the large theatre. Hitler made this sketch as a pen and ink drawing. To my mind, this sketch is one of the best that Hitler made in his attempt to be an architect. This sketch is listed under number 101 as 'Oper Berlin O(ber) S(alzberg) 1940' on a catalogue which was started in 1937 by Otto Apel, Chief of my Office of Architecture, and continued until the end of the war...' Also included is a receipt for the 1980 payment made to Speer for purchase of this piece. Hitler was a dedicated opera devotee, especially of the works of Wagner, and often attended performances in Germany and abroad. A fine piece, with indisputable provenance.