'Graf Zeppelin,1931', by Alexander Kircher (American, b.1867).
A dramatic, original oil painting on canvas, depicting a scene of the LZ-127 GRAF ZEPPELIN unloading passengers being ferried between it and the Russian icebreaker Malygin off Franz Josef Land during its famous Arctic voyage in 1931.
Oil on canvas, signed ALEX.KIRCHER.
Note: Dr. Hugo Echener, one-time journalist, joined forces with Count Zeppelin to complete the first ever round the world passenger flight, made by the Graf in 1929. Two years later, Echener led the historic polar exploration flight, piloting the Graf to rest in “Quiet Sound” on the 82nd parallel at 17.30 hours on 27 July 1931. Over 50,000 letters and cards, bearing the official Zeppelin rubber stamp were transferred between the dirigible’s gondola and the ship’s tender, before Echener ordered an emergency take-off, the airship dragging its anchor and heading towards hazardous drift ice. “The whole adventurous rendezvous” reported Arthur Koestler on board the Graf “had lasted exactly thirteen minutes” yet Echener’s expedition had demonstrated the airship’s potential for scientific exploration from the air. The epoch of the airship was to prove a short one, the destruction of the Graf Zeppelin’s sister ship Hindenberg in 1937 effectively ending it.