Museum of the Nötscher Kreis

Sebastian ISEPP, Der blaue Berg, um 1906, Privatbesitz

Sebastian Isepp


Sebastian Isepp was born on February 18th, 1884, the third of five children of the couple Ursula and Sebastian Isepp Sr. in Nötsch in the Carinthian Gail valley. After graduating from secondary school in Marburg in 1903, he began studying with Rudolf Bacher at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, from which he graduated in 1907. Already as early as 1908, Isepp was regularly showing his works and in 1918 he was represented in the spring exhibitions of the Vienna Secession, and from 1909 – 1911 he was a full member. The only exception was the year 1911, in which he took part in the “Special exhibition of painting and sculpture”, which the “Neukunstgruppe” (New Art Group) organized in the rooms of the Vienna Hagenbund. Isepp was even given two separate rooms for the presentation of his pictures – a privilege that was only shared by Oskar Kokoschka, with whom he had a close friendship for life.

He also participated in international exhibitions during this time, such as in Dresden, Düsseldorf, Rome and Zurich. Sebastian Isepp’s artistic interest was not limited to painting, but also expressed itself in sculptural or handicraft work. He was also very musical and, together with his brother Hubert, he dedicated himself to the restoration and construction of old stringed instruments. These diverse talents also earned him a reputation of being a welcome guest in the progressive intellectual circles of Vienna in the early 20th Century. He maintained numerous contacts with well-known personalities from art, music and literature of that time, such as Eugenie and Hermann Schwarzwald, Berta Zuckerkandl, Adolf Loos, Rainer Maria Rilke, Egon Wellesz, Carl Zuckmayer, Jakob Wassermann, or Hugo von Hofmannsthal.

In 1915, Isepp volunteered for the Landsturm Infantry Regiment No. 4 as a one-year volunteer and was admitted to military service despite being originally unfit. In the spring 1916, he was posted to the Italian southwestern front, where he had to endure several Isonzo battles, and in 1917/18 he fought in the Carnic Alps in the Upper Gail valley.

Sebastian ISEPP
Sebastian ISEPP, Waldinneres im Winter I, 1909/1910, Privatbesitz