Margarethe Held

1894 - 1981

  • Nr. 17 "Gestorbener", pencil on paper, 39.5 x 29.5 cm
  • Nr.18 "Gestorbener", pencil on paper, 39.5 x 29.5 cm
  • Nr. 20 "Gestorbene", pencil on paper, 39.5 x 29.5 cm
  • Nr. 57 "Gestorbener", pencil on paper, 39.5 x 29.5 cm
  • Nr. 15, pencil on paper, 27.5 x 21 cm
  • Nr. 295, pencil on paper, 39.5 x 29.5 cm
  • Paulus - Helfer des Mediums, chalk on paper, 39.5 x 29.5 cm
  • Nr. 290 "Elf", chalk on paper, 39.5 x 29.5 cm
  • untitled, chalk on cardboard, 49.5 x 34.5 cm
  • "Rune" Symbolisches Zeichen", chalk on paper, 58 x 39.5 cm

Margarethe Held was born in 1894, in Mettingen near Stuttgart. After graduating from commercial college, she supported herself by office work. In 1921 she got married, but after only four years she lost her husband, and shortly afterwards her father also died. From that time, she began to communicate with spirits including those of the deceased members of her own family, who revealed themselves through dreams and communicated with her aurally via knocking sounds. She believed that she could communicate with her deceased husband through a “letter tablet”. In 1926, while taking acting classes, she met the man who would become her second husband. The couple moved to Berlin and began to operate a movie agency; they separated after the war. Her interest in occult practices began to increase. According to Held, in1950, while she was in contact with her deceased husband, an unknown entity whom she identified as “Siwa, God of the Indians and Mongols”, entered the conversation. She began drawing under Siwa’s guidance and describes the initial stages as follows: “Suddenly Siwa instructs, ‘take paper and pencil and draw!’ This act of drawing was a strange sensation, to trust the movement of my hand and to allow it to be directed.” This is how my drawing began and at age 56, I realized that I had a task to fulfill.

For every picture was accompanied by a short description: “God asked me to create a work for simple people who wish to be shown God’s omnipotence and works he has created in a positive way…” Within four months after her ‘calling’, she had produced more than 300 drawings, graphite and color pencil portraits of deceased people, gods, gnomes, fairies, demons, and extraterrestrials, as well as a series of primeval animals and celestial flowers. In 1954, portraits of Jesus, Mary, and also of Siwa emerged. The individual portraits were executed primarily in left profile, a few were executed frontally. In only one small series depicting lovers, did two figures appear on a single sheet. Initially, Margarethe Held drew in pencil, later she used pastel crayons. In 1954, she abruptly ended her activity as an artistic medium.

Margarethe Held’s portraits appear like masques. In her world there exist the “good dead” who have a magical protective power, and the “bad dead” who cause misery and catastrophes. She has recorded her visions in the book Unkontrollierbares Universum [Uncontrollable Universe]. Furthermore, under Siwa’s guidance voluminous texts about travels to Jupiter and to other planets in addition to a History of Creation emerged. Margarethe Held died in 1981.