Isaac Grünewald has been a leading figure in the Swedish modernist movement ever since his artistic debut at “De Ungas” exhibition of collective works in 1909. He diligently participated in the Swedish art debate until his death in 1946. Grünewald was both a visual and ceramic artist, as well as a professor at the Royal Swedish Academy of Arts in Stockholm between 1932 and 1942.
He was a student at the Konstnärsförbundet (Artists Association) art school and later studied under Henri Matisse in Paris. The express trains, cars and airplanes of the new century gave mankind the opportunity to gather a great number of impressions in a short time span at high speeds, which inspired Grünewald to depict the interiors and views of vibrant city life as experienced by its contemporary players. He therefore often embraced unexpected angles and with his chromatic diversity explored the interplay of light and dark to which the new electric city lights contributed. As with the mood painters who belonged to Konstnärsförbundet, Grünewald often painted from memory, but during the 1920s (in conjunction with his move back to Paris) his style changed and his work no longer showed the same inspiration by Matisse. He transitioned to painting landscapes, still lifes and nude models on site and thus approached a style of painting more closely resembling realism.
Grünewald was married to artist Sigrid Hjertén from 1911 to 1937, and often expressed his great admiration for her artistry.