The Paintrist Files

cootedetat:

Karl Schmidt-Rottluff (1884-1976) - Paintings

Karl Schmidt-Rottluff (1 December 1884 – 10 August 1976) was a German expressionist painter and printmaker, one of the four founder-members of the artist group Die Brücke.

He was born Karl Schmidt in Rottluff, Saxony, today a district of Chemnitz, and attended the Humanistisches Gynasium in Chemnitz. He began to study architecture in Dresden, but gave up after a term, when he became a founder member of a group of artists known as Die Brücke (“The Bridge”), along with his fellow architecture students Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Fritz Bleyl and Erich Heckel. The group was founded in Dresden on 7 June 1905, and its first exhibition opened in Leipzig in November of the same year.

In 1906 he added “Rottluff” to his surname. He spent the summer of that year on island of Alsen, in the company of Emil Nolde. From 1907 to 1912 he spent the summers on the coast at Dangast, near Bremen. In December 1911, like the rest of members of Die Brücke he moved from Dresden to Berlin. The group was dissolved in 1913. He served in the army on the eastern front in 1915–18, before returning to Berlin, where he spent the rest of his life, except for a period during the Second World War, when he returned to Rottluff following the destruction of his studio in an air raid.

The honours bestowed on Schmidt-Rottluff after World War I, as Expressionism officially recognized in Germany, were taken away from him after the rise to power of the Nazis. He was expelled from the Prussian Academy of Arts in 1933, two years after his admission. In 1937, 608 of Schmidt-Rottluff’s paintings were seized from museums by the Nazis and several of them shown in exhibitions of “degenerate art” (“Entartete Kunst”). By 1941 he had been expelled from the painters guild and forbidden to paint.

After the war, in 1947, Schmidt-Rottluff was appointed professor at the University of Arts in Berlin-Charlottenburg, through which he again exercised an important influence on a new generation of artists. An endowment made by him in 1964 provided the basis for the Brücke Museum in West Berlin, which opened in 1967 as a repository of works by members of the group.

He was a prolific printmaker, with 300 woodcuts, 105 lithographs, 70 etchings, and 78 commercial prints described in Rosa Schapire’s Catalogue raisonné.

He died in Berlin in 1976.

davoser-tagebuch:

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Self portrait, 1932

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (6 May 1880 – 15 June 1938) was a German expressionist painter and printmaker and one of the founders of the artists group Die Brücke or “The Bridge”, a key group leading to the foundation of Expressionism in 20th-century art. He volunteered for army service in the First World War, but soon suffered a breakdown and was discharged. In 1933, his work was branded as “degenerate” by the Nazis and in 1937 over 600 of his works were sold or destroyed. In 1938 he committed suicide by gunshot.
Ernst Ludwig Kirchner was born in Aschaffenburg, Bavaria. His parents were of Prussian descent and his mother was a descendent of the Huguenots, a fact to which Kirchner often referred. As Kirchner’s father searched for a job, the family moved frequently and Kirchner attended schools in Frankfurt and Perlen until his father earned the position of Professor of Paper Sciences at the college of technology in Chemnitz, where Kirchner attended secondary school. Although Kirchner’s parents encouraged his artistic career they also wanted him to complete his formal education so in 1901, he began studying architecture at the Königliche Technische Hochschule (royal technical university) of Dresden. The institution provided a wide range of studies in addition to architecture, such as freehand drawing, perspective drawing and the historical study of art. He became close friends there with Fritz Bleyl, whom he met during the first term. They discussed art together and also studied nature, having a radical outlook in common. Kirchner continued studies in Munich 1903–1904, returning to Dresden in 1905 to complete his degree.
In 1905, Kirchner, along with Bleyl and two other architecture students, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff and Erich Heckel, founded the artists group Die Brücke (“The Bridge”). From then on, he committed himself to art. The group aimed to eschew the prevalent traditional academic style and find a new mode of artistic expression, which would form a bridge (hence the name) between the past and the present. They responded both to past artists such as Albrecht Dürer, Matthias Grünewald and Lucas Cranach the Elder, as well as contemporary international avant-garde movements. As part of the affirmation of their national heritage, they revived older media, particularly woodcut prints.
Their group was one of the seminal ones, which in due course had a major impact on the evolution of modern art in the 20th century and created the style of Expressionism. The group met initially in Kirchner’s first studio, which had previously been a butcher’s shop.
The group composed a manifesto, written by Kirchner, stated that “Anyone who directly and honestly reproduces that force which impels him to create belongs to us.”
In September and October 1906, the first group exhibition was held, focused on the female nude, in the showroom of K.F.M. Seifert and Co. in Dresden.
In 1906, he met Doris Große, who was his favoured model until 1911. Between 1907 and 1911, he stayed during the summer at the Moritzburg lakes and on the island of Fehmarn (which he revisited until 1914) with other Brücke members; his work featured the female nude in natural settings. In 1911, he moved to Berlin, where he founded a private art school, MIUM-Institut, in collaboration with Max Pechstein with the aim of promulgating “Moderner Unterricht im Malen” (modern teaching of painting). This was not a success and closed the following year, when he also began a relationship with Erna Schilling that lasted the rest of his life.

In 1913, his writing of Chronik der Brücke (Brücke chronicle) led to the ending of the group. At this time, he established an individual identity with his first solo exhibition, which took place at the Essen Folkwang Museum. During the next two years, he painted a series of “Großstadtbilder” (metropole pictures) showing the streets of Berlin, with the central characters of street walkers(prostitutes).
At the onset of the First World War in September 1914, Kirchner volunteered for military service. He was sent to Halle an der Saale to train as a driver in the reserve unit of the 75 Mansfeld Field Artillery Regiment. Kirchner’s riding instructor, Professor Hans Fehr, arranged for Kirchner to be discharged after a mental breakdown. Kirchner then returned to Berlin and continued to work, producing many paintings including Self Portrait as a Soldier (1915), until he was admitted to Dr Kohnstamm’s sanatorium in Königstein in Taunus in December 1915 where he was diagnosed with a strong dependency on Veronal and alcoholism. In a letter to Dr. Karl Hagemann, a friend and patron, Kirchner writes: “After lengthy struggles I now find myself here for a time to put my mind into some kind of order. It is a terribly difficult thing, of course, to be among strangers so much of the day. But perhaps I’ll be able to see and create something new. For the time being, I would like more peace and absolute seclusion. Of course, I long more and more for my work and my studio. Theories may be all very well for keeping a spiritual balance, but they are grey and shadowy compared with work and life”. Throughout 1916, Kirchner periodically returned to Berlin for a few weeks at a time to continue his work at his studio. Kirchner produced many oil paintings and drawings and sold many works during 1916 and was doing well financially. In December, he suffered from a nervous breakdown and was admitted to Dr Edel’s sanatorium in Berlin Charlottenburg.
In 1917, at the suggestion of Eberhard Grisebach, Helen Spengler invited Kirchner to Davos where he viewed an exhibition of Ferdinand Hodler paintings. Kirchner found the weather too cold and returned to Berlin after a stay of only two days.
Soon after, Kirchner’s close friend and mentor, Botho Graef died and Kirchner decided to return to Davos for treatment. There he was under the care of Dr. Lucius Spengler who forced Kirchner to adhere to strict rules and routine. Kirchner deeply resented this and did everything in his power to deceive the doctor: “Spengler didn’t know what to do with me, for my deception was totally alien to this excellent man’s way of thinking”. To avoid being under constant watch, Kirchner moved to the Reusch Hut on the Stafelalp in the summer of 1917. Kirchner continued to experience occasional pain and paralysis of his limbs but wrote in a more cheerful tone to Dr. Hagemann at the end of July: “I wish to remain in the world and for the world. The high mountains here will help me”. The summer was very productive, despite Kirchner’s illness.
Kirchner continued to work through 1919 and 1920 as his health also rapidly improved. His reputation grew with several exhibitions in Germany and Switzerland in 1920. He was provided with many subjects to paint as he came to know the farmers of the area, who were amazed by Kirchner’s gramophone. Kirchner writes of the people of Davos: “The people who live here are proud. The hard work, which is done with great love, the way they treat animals (you very seldom see an animal being mishandled) entitle them to be proud. In most cases, work here has reached the ideal standard of being done with love. You can see it in the movements of their hands. And that, in turn, ennobles the facial expression and imbues all personal contacts with a great delicacy. This is a country in which democracy has become reality. Here a man’s word still counts, and you need have no fears about sleeping with your doors open. I am so happy to be allowed to be here, and through hard work I should like to thank the people for the kindness they have shown me”.
Kirchner began writing critiques of his own art under the pseudonym of Louis de Marsalle in order to control public opinion of him and free himself of dependence upon the art critics of the day.
In 1921, there was a major display of Kirchner’s work in Berlin; the reviews were favourable. Kirchner’s father died on the 14 February. Kirchner visited Zurich at the beginning of May and met the dancer, Nina Hard, whom he invited back to Frauenkirch (despite Erna’s objections). Nina Hard would become an important model for Kirchner and would be featured in many of his works. Kirchner began creating designs for carpets which were then woven by Lise Gujer.
In 1923, Kirchner moved to the Wildboden house, writing in his diary: “Our new little house is a real joy to us. We shall live here comfortably and in great new order. This will really come to be a turning point of my life. Everything must be put in clear order and the little house furnished as simply and modestly as possible, while still being beautiful and intimate”. The house looked over Frauenkirch and the Stafelalp on one side and on the other, Davos and Kirchner used these landscapes as subjects for many of his paintings.
In 1925, Kirchner became close friends with fellow artist, Albert Müller and his family. Rot-Blau, a new art group based in Basle, was formed by Hermann Scherer, Albert Müller, Paul Camenisch and Hans Schiess, who all visited Kirchner and worked under his guidance. At the end of 1925, Kirchner returned to Germany and made his rounds to Frankfurt, Chemnitz (where he mother was living), and Berlin where he met with Karl Schmidt-Rottluff who wanted Kirchner to form a new artist’s group; Kirchner politely refused. He then returned to Frauenkirch and wrote to Dr. Hageman on 26 March 1926: “Now I’m sitting quietly at home again and I’m happy to be able to work undisturbed. I made a lot of sketches of life in Germany and it was very intriguing to see life there. I was also glad to see the old pictures of Rembrandt, Dürer, etc. again and to have the confirmation and encouragement they gave me. As for the moderns, I saw damned little that gripped me”. In December 1926, Kirchner’s close friend, Albert Müller, died of typhus along with his wife, Anni Müller. In 1927, Kirchner organized a memorial exhibition for Albert Müller at the Kunsthalle Basel. There was a major exhibition of Kirchner’s work at the schoolhouse in Davos; the reviews were positive.
Kirchner continued to work in Frauenkirch, his style growing increasingly abstract. In 1929, Kirchner was forced to distance himself from Rot-Blau after they pledged allegiance to him, which upset Kirchner greatly. He addressed them in “An open letter to the Basle Red-Blue group” in No. 5 of Das Kunstbaltt, where stated that he was not their patron. In the same year, Kirchner visited Zurich, Berlin, and Essen. He was also visited in Frauenkirch by the painter Fritz Winter.
In 1930, Kirchner began to experience health problems due to smoking and in 1931 Erna had to undergo surgery in Berlin due to a suspected growth. In 1931, he was made a member of the Prussian Academy of Arts in Berlin. As the Nazi party took power in Germany, it became impossible for Kirchner to sell his paintings. In 1933, he was forced to resign from the Prussian Academy of Arts. Kirchner became increasingly disturbed by the situation in Germany, writing: “Here we have been hearing terrible rumours about torture of the Jews, but it’s all surely untrue. I’m a little tired and sad about the situation up there. There is a war in the air. In the museums, the hard-won cultural achievements of the last 20 years are being destroyed, and yet the reason why we founded the Brücke was to encourage truly German art, made in Germany. And now it is supposed to be un-German. Dear God. It does upset me”.
In 1934, Kirchner visited Berne and Zurich, finding the former more pleasing than the latter, and met Paul Klee. In the winter of 1935, a new school was being planned to be built in Frauenkirch and Kirchner offered to paint a mural. This project was dropped and instead Kirchner created a sculpture to be placed above the door of the schoolhouse. Reflecting on the inauguration of the schoolhouse in 1936 he writes, “the new school was inaugurated yesterday. It was a celebration with songs, dancing and speeches, followed by drinking such as I have not seen or experienced in decades…They made a point of including me and so there I was, sitting once again amongst these people who had received me with such kindness and friendliness on the alp twenty years ago. The relief has found favour and was mentioned often in the speeches”.
Throughout 1936 and 1937, Kirchner began to experience health problems and was prescribed Ovaltine and Eukodol by his doctors. In 1937, the Degenerate Art Exhibition took place in Germany; a total of 639 works by Kirchner were taken out of museums and 25 were displayed in the exhibition. The Academy of Arts in Berlin expelled Kirchner as a member. Kirchner continued to work and organised a major exhibit in Basle, which received mixed reviews. Throughout 1938, Kirchner became increasingly upset with the situation in Germany. After Austria was annexed by Germany, Kirchner became disturbed by the idea that Germany might invade Switzerland. On 15 June 1938, Kirchner took his own life in front of his home in Frauenkirch. Three days later, Kirchner was laid to rest in the Waldfriedhof cemetery. Erna continued to live in the house until her death in 1945.

davoser-tagebuch:

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Self portrait, 1932

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (6 May 1880 – 15 June 1938) was a German expressionist painter and printmaker and one of the founders of the artists group Die Brücke or “The Bridge”, a key group leading to the foundation of Expressionism in 20th-century art. He volunteered for army service in the First World War, but soon suffered a breakdown and was discharged. In 1933, his work was branded as “degenerate” by the Nazis and in 1937 over 600 of his works were sold or destroyed. In 1938 he committed suicide by gunshot.

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner was born in Aschaffenburg, Bavaria. His parents were of Prussian descent and his mother was a descendent of the Huguenots, a fact to which Kirchner often referred. As Kirchner’s father searched for a job, the family moved frequently and Kirchner attended schools in Frankfurt and Perlen until his father earned the position of Professor of Paper Sciences at the college of technology in Chemnitz, where Kirchner attended secondary school. Although Kirchner’s parents encouraged his artistic career they also wanted him to complete his formal education so in 1901, he began studying architecture at the Königliche Technische Hochschule (royal technical university) of Dresden. The institution provided a wide range of studies in addition to architecture, such as freehand drawing, perspective drawing and the historical study of art. He became close friends there with Fritz Bleyl, whom he met during the first term. They discussed art together and also studied nature, having a radical outlook in common. Kirchner continued studies in Munich 1903–1904, returning to Dresden in 1905 to complete his degree.

In 1905, Kirchner, along with Bleyl and two other architecture students, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff and Erich Heckel, founded the artists group Die Brücke (“The Bridge”). From then on, he committed himself to art. The group aimed to eschew the prevalent traditional academic style and find a new mode of artistic expression, which would form a bridge (hence the name) between the past and the present. They responded both to past artists such as Albrecht Dürer, Matthias Grünewald and Lucas Cranach the Elder, as well as contemporary international avant-garde movements. As part of the affirmation of their national heritage, they revived older media, particularly woodcut prints.

Their group was one of the seminal ones, which in due course had a major impact on the evolution of modern art in the 20th century and created the style of Expressionism. The group met initially in Kirchner’s first studio, which had previously been a butcher’s shop.

The group composed a manifesto, written by Kirchner, stated that “Anyone who directly and honestly reproduces that force which impels him to create belongs to us.”

In September and October 1906, the first group exhibition was held, focused on the female nude, in the showroom of K.F.M. Seifert and Co. in Dresden.

In 1906, he met Doris Große, who was his favoured model until 1911. Between 1907 and 1911, he stayed during the summer at the Moritzburg lakes and on the island of Fehmarn (which he revisited until 1914) with other Brücke members; his work featured the female nude in natural settings. In 1911, he moved to Berlin, where he founded a private art school, MIUM-Institut, in collaboration with Max Pechstein with the aim of promulgating “Moderner Unterricht im Malen” (modern teaching of painting). This was not a success and closed the following year, when he also began a relationship with Erna Schilling that lasted the rest of his life.

In 1913, his writing of Chronik der Brücke (Brücke chronicle) led to the ending of the group. At this time, he established an individual identity with his first solo exhibition, which took place at the Essen Folkwang Museum. During the next two years, he painted a series of “Großstadtbilder” (metropole pictures) showing the streets of Berlin, with the central characters of street walkers(prostitutes).

At the onset of the First World War in September 1914, Kirchner volunteered for military service. He was sent to Halle an der Saale to train as a driver in the reserve unit of the 75 Mansfeld Field Artillery Regiment. Kirchner’s riding instructor, Professor Hans Fehr, arranged for Kirchner to be discharged after a mental breakdown. Kirchner then returned to Berlin and continued to work, producing many paintings including Self Portrait as a Soldier (1915), until he was admitted to Dr Kohnstamm’s sanatorium in Königstein in Taunus in December 1915 where he was diagnosed with a strong dependency on Veronal and alcoholism. In a letter to Dr. Karl Hagemann, a friend and patron, Kirchner writes: “After lengthy struggles I now find myself here for a time to put my mind into some kind of order. It is a terribly difficult thing, of course, to be among strangers so much of the day. But perhaps I’ll be able to see and create something new. For the time being, I would like more peace and absolute seclusion. Of course, I long more and more for my work and my studio. Theories may be all very well for keeping a spiritual balance, but they are grey and shadowy compared with work and life”. Throughout 1916, Kirchner periodically returned to Berlin for a few weeks at a time to continue his work at his studio. Kirchner produced many oil paintings and drawings and sold many works during 1916 and was doing well financially. In December, he suffered from a nervous breakdown and was admitted to Dr Edel’s sanatorium in Berlin Charlottenburg.

In 1917, at the suggestion of Eberhard Grisebach, Helen Spengler invited Kirchner to Davos where he viewed an exhibition of Ferdinand Hodler paintings. Kirchner found the weather too cold and returned to Berlin after a stay of only two days.

Soon after, Kirchner’s close friend and mentor, Botho Graef died and Kirchner decided to return to Davos for treatment. There he was under the care of Dr. Lucius Spengler who forced Kirchner to adhere to strict rules and routine. Kirchner deeply resented this and did everything in his power to deceive the doctor: “Spengler didn’t know what to do with me, for my deception was totally alien to this excellent man’s way of thinking”. To avoid being under constant watch, Kirchner moved to the Reusch Hut on the Stafelalp in the summer of 1917. Kirchner continued to experience occasional pain and paralysis of his limbs but wrote in a more cheerful tone to Dr. Hagemann at the end of July: “I wish to remain in the world and for the world. The high mountains here will help me”. The summer was very productive, despite Kirchner’s illness.

Kirchner continued to work through 1919 and 1920 as his health also rapidly improved. His reputation grew with several exhibitions in Germany and Switzerland in 1920. He was provided with many subjects to paint as he came to know the farmers of the area, who were amazed by Kirchner’s gramophone. Kirchner writes of the people of Davos: “The people who live here are proud. The hard work, which is done with great love, the way they treat animals (you very seldom see an animal being mishandled) entitle them to be proud. In most cases, work here has reached the ideal standard of being done with love. You can see it in the movements of their hands. And that, in turn, ennobles the facial expression and imbues all personal contacts with a great delicacy. This is a country in which democracy has become reality. Here a man’s word still counts, and you need have no fears about sleeping with your doors open. I am so happy to be allowed to be here, and through hard work I should like to thank the people for the kindness they have shown me”.

Kirchner began writing critiques of his own art under the pseudonym of Louis de Marsalle in order to control public opinion of him and free himself of dependence upon the art critics of the day.

In 1921, there was a major display of Kirchner’s work in Berlin; the reviews were favourable. Kirchner’s father died on the 14 February. Kirchner visited Zurich at the beginning of May and met the dancer, Nina Hard, whom he invited back to Frauenkirch (despite Erna’s objections). Nina Hard would become an important model for Kirchner and would be featured in many of his works. Kirchner began creating designs for carpets which were then woven by Lise Gujer.

In 1923, Kirchner moved to the Wildboden house, writing in his diary: “Our new little house is a real joy to us. We shall live here comfortably and in great new order. This will really come to be a turning point of my life. Everything must be put in clear order and the little house furnished as simply and modestly as possible, while still being beautiful and intimate”. The house looked over Frauenkirch and the Stafelalp on one side and on the other, Davos and Kirchner used these landscapes as subjects for many of his paintings.

In 1925, Kirchner became close friends with fellow artist, Albert Müller and his family. Rot-Blau, a new art group based in Basle, was formed by Hermann Scherer, Albert Müller, Paul Camenisch and Hans Schiess, who all visited Kirchner and worked under his guidance. At the end of 1925, Kirchner returned to Germany and made his rounds to Frankfurt, Chemnitz (where he mother was living), and Berlin where he met with Karl Schmidt-Rottluff who wanted Kirchner to form a new artist’s group; Kirchner politely refused. He then returned to Frauenkirch and wrote to Dr. Hageman on 26 March 1926: “Now I’m sitting quietly at home again and I’m happy to be able to work undisturbed. I made a lot of sketches of life in Germany and it was very intriguing to see life there. I was also glad to see the old pictures of Rembrandt, Dürer, etc. again and to have the confirmation and encouragement they gave me. As for the moderns, I saw damned little that gripped me”. In December 1926, Kirchner’s close friend, Albert Müller, died of typhus along with his wife, Anni Müller. In 1927, Kirchner organized a memorial exhibition for Albert Müller at the Kunsthalle Basel. There was a major exhibition of Kirchner’s work at the schoolhouse in Davos; the reviews were positive.

Kirchner continued to work in Frauenkirch, his style growing increasingly abstract. In 1929, Kirchner was forced to distance himself from Rot-Blau after they pledged allegiance to him, which upset Kirchner greatly. He addressed them in “An open letter to the Basle Red-Blue group” in No. 5 of Das Kunstbaltt, where stated that he was not their patron. In the same year, Kirchner visited Zurich, Berlin, and Essen. He was also visited in Frauenkirch by the painter Fritz Winter.

In 1930, Kirchner began to experience health problems due to smoking and in 1931 Erna had to undergo surgery in Berlin due to a suspected growth. In 1931, he was made a member of the Prussian Academy of Arts in Berlin. As the Nazi party took power in Germany, it became impossible for Kirchner to sell his paintings. In 1933, he was forced to resign from the Prussian Academy of Arts. Kirchner became increasingly disturbed by the situation in Germany, writing: “Here we have been hearing terrible rumours about torture of the Jews, but it’s all surely untrue. I’m a little tired and sad about the situation up there. There is a war in the air. In the museums, the hard-won cultural achievements of the last 20 years are being destroyed, and yet the reason why we founded the Brücke was to encourage truly German art, made in Germany. And now it is supposed to be un-German. Dear God. It does upset me”.

In 1934, Kirchner visited Berne and Zurich, finding the former more pleasing than the latter, and met Paul Klee. In the winter of 1935, a new school was being planned to be built in Frauenkirch and Kirchner offered to paint a mural. This project was dropped and instead Kirchner created a sculpture to be placed above the door of the schoolhouse. Reflecting on the inauguration of the schoolhouse in 1936 he writes, “the new school was inaugurated yesterday. It was a celebration with songs, dancing and speeches, followed by drinking such as I have not seen or experienced in decades…They made a point of including me and so there I was, sitting once again amongst these people who had received me with such kindness and friendliness on the alp twenty years ago. The relief has found favour and was mentioned often in the speeches”.

Throughout 1936 and 1937, Kirchner began to experience health problems and was prescribed Ovaltine and Eukodol by his doctors. In 1937, the Degenerate Art Exhibition took place in Germany; a total of 639 works by Kirchner were taken out of museums and 25 were displayed in the exhibition. The Academy of Arts in Berlin expelled Kirchner as a member. Kirchner continued to work and organised a major exhibit in Basle, which received mixed reviews. Throughout 1938, Kirchner became increasingly upset with the situation in Germany. After Austria was annexed by Germany, Kirchner became disturbed by the idea that Germany might invade Switzerland. On 15 June 1938, Kirchner took his own life in front of his home in Frauenkirch. Three days later, Kirchner was laid to rest in the Waldfriedhof cemetery. Erna continued to live in the house until her death in 1945.

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (1880–1938) - Portrait of Erich Heckel at the easel -
Erich Heckel (31 July 1883, Döbeln – 27 January 1970, Radolfzell) was a German painter and printmaker, and a founding member of the Die Brücke group (“The Bridge”) which existed 1905-1913.
Heckel was born in Döbeln, Saxony, the son of a railway engineer. Between 1897 and 1904 he attended the Realgymnasium in Chemnitz, before beginning studies in architecture at the Technische Hochschule in Dresden. He left after three terms, shortly after the foundation of Die Brücke, an artists’ group of which he was secretary and treasurer. The other founder-members, also architectural students, were Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Karl Schmidt-Rotluff and Fritz Bleyl. He worked in the office of the architect Wilhelm Kreis until July 1907, when he resigned to become a full-time artist.
Heckel met the other founding members of Die Brucke, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Karl Schmidt-Rotluff, and Fritz Bleyl, while studying architecture at the Dresden Polytechnic Institute. The foursome equally regarded architecture as a compromise with their respectable middle class parents who would have never supported them if they had wanted to study art. Heckel attended the Dresden Polytechnic Institute for only eighteen months, after which time he accepted a job as a draughtsman at Wilhem Kreis’s architectural studio. He was able to use the position for the benefit of the Brucke. When the firm was asked to design an exhibition room for the lamp manufacturer Max Seifert, Heckel was able to persuade the industrialist that it was worthwhile giving wall space and displays to the Brucke for an exhibition.
As a member of Die Brücke, Heckel often filled the role of business manager, which allowed the collective to network with other upcoming artists at the time, such as the Munich-based Franz Marc. This subsequently led to greater publicity for the collective, such as their mention in the almanac of Franz Marc’s own artistic coalition, the Blaue Reiter.
It is worthwhile to note that with the exception of one favorable review by Paul Fetcher in the leading Dresden newspaper Dresdner Neueste Nachrichten, the exhibition in Löbtau at the factory of the lamp manufacturer Max Seifert was considered to be a flop. In addition, Heckel’s poster, no longer extant, had been barred from public display by the Dresden police. In 1906 and 1907 the Die Brücke had another exhibition in Löbtau, devoted exclusively to graphics and including a group of woodcuts by Wassily Kandinsky. Unfortunately, the group once again failed to strike a chord with the public.
However, much more noteworthy and ironically also notorious, were the next three annual shows by the Die Brücke, this time held in the fashionable Emil Richter Gallery. In large, silent rooms, expensively furnished and smothered with lush carpets, the group’s unconventional paintings and prints struck a foreseeably strident chord, amongst them notably a nude poster of a woman that ruffled many a complacent Dresdener.
Heckel and other members of Die Brücke greatly admired the work of Edvard Munch, and aimed to make a “bridge” between traditional neo-romantic German painting and modern expressionist painting. The four founding members made much use of the print as a cheap and quick medium with which to produce affordable art.
Primitive art was also an inspiration to the members of the Die Brücke. It was Heckel’s brother who introduced the group to African sculpture, and it is noted that their acceptance of primitive art, which was to fortify decisively the expressive yearnings of European artists- Was unequivocal. It is through this style that they found a source of strength in the barbaric figures.
In December 1911, Erich Heckel moved from Dresden to Berlin. Die Brücke was dissolved in 1913. He was classified as unfit for active service during the First World War, but volunteered to serve in an ambulance unit stationed in Belgium. He managed to continue to produce work throughout the war.
In 1937 the Nazi Party declared his work “degenerate”; it forbade him to show his work in public, and more than 700 items of his art were confiscated from German museums. By 1944 all of his woodcut blocks and print plates had been destroyed. After World War II Heckel lived at Gaienhofen near Lake Constance, teaching at the Karlsruhe Academy until 1955. He continued painting until his death at Radolfzell in 1970.
Like most members of Die Brücke, he was a prolific printmaker: Dube’s catalogues raisonné describe with 465 woodcuts, 375 etchings, and 400 lithographs. More than 200 of them, mostly etchings, are from the last seven years of his life.
A major retrospective exhibition, Erich Heckel – His Work in the 1920s, was held October 2004 – February 2005 at the Brücke Museum in Berlin.

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (1880–1938) - Portrait of Erich Heckel at the easel -

Erich Heckel (31 July 1883, Döbeln – 27 January 1970, Radolfzell) was a German painter and printmaker, and a founding member of the Die Brücke group (“The Bridge”) which existed 1905-1913.

Heckel was born in Döbeln, Saxony, the son of a railway engineer. Between 1897 and 1904 he attended the Realgymnasium in Chemnitz, before beginning studies in architecture at the Technische Hochschule in Dresden. He left after three terms, shortly after the foundation of Die Brücke, an artists’ group of which he was secretary and treasurer. The other founder-members, also architectural students, were Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Karl Schmidt-Rotluff and Fritz Bleyl. He worked in the office of the architect Wilhelm Kreis until July 1907, when he resigned to become a full-time artist.

Heckel met the other founding members of Die Brucke, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Karl Schmidt-Rotluff, and Fritz Bleyl, while studying architecture at the Dresden Polytechnic Institute. The foursome equally regarded architecture as a compromise with their respectable middle class parents who would have never supported them if they had wanted to study art. Heckel attended the Dresden Polytechnic Institute for only eighteen months, after which time he accepted a job as a draughtsman at Wilhem Kreis’s architectural studio. He was able to use the position for the benefit of the Brucke. When the firm was asked to design an exhibition room for the lamp manufacturer Max Seifert, Heckel was able to persuade the industrialist that it was worthwhile giving wall space and displays to the Brucke for an exhibition.

As a member of Die Brücke, Heckel often filled the role of business manager, which allowed the collective to network with other upcoming artists at the time, such as the Munich-based Franz Marc. This subsequently led to greater publicity for the collective, such as their mention in the almanac of Franz Marc’s own artistic coalition, the Blaue Reiter.

It is worthwhile to note that with the exception of one favorable review by Paul Fetcher in the leading Dresden newspaper Dresdner Neueste Nachrichten, the exhibition in Löbtau at the factory of the lamp manufacturer Max Seifert was considered to be a flop. In addition, Heckel’s poster, no longer extant, had been barred from public display by the Dresden police. In 1906 and 1907 the Die Brücke had another exhibition in Löbtau, devoted exclusively to graphics and including a group of woodcuts by Wassily Kandinsky. Unfortunately, the group once again failed to strike a chord with the public.

However, much more noteworthy and ironically also notorious, were the next three annual shows by the Die Brücke, this time held in the fashionable Emil Richter Gallery. In large, silent rooms, expensively furnished and smothered with lush carpets, the group’s unconventional paintings and prints struck a foreseeably strident chord, amongst them notably a nude poster of a woman that ruffled many a complacent Dresdener.

Heckel and other members of Die Brücke greatly admired the work of Edvard Munch, and aimed to make a “bridge” between traditional neo-romantic German painting and modern expressionist painting. The four founding members made much use of the print as a cheap and quick medium with which to produce affordable art.

Primitive art was also an inspiration to the members of the Die Brücke. It was Heckel’s brother who introduced the group to African sculpture, and it is noted that their acceptance of primitive art, which was to fortify decisively the expressive yearnings of European artists- Was unequivocal. It is through this style that they found a source of strength in the barbaric figures.

In December 1911, Erich Heckel moved from Dresden to Berlin. Die Brücke was dissolved in 1913. He was classified as unfit for active service during the First World War, but volunteered to serve in an ambulance unit stationed in Belgium. He managed to continue to produce work throughout the war.

In 1937 the Nazi Party declared his work “degenerate”; it forbade him to show his work in public, and more than 700 items of his art were confiscated from German museums. By 1944 all of his woodcut blocks and print plates had been destroyed. After World War II Heckel lived at Gaienhofen near Lake Constance, teaching at the Karlsruhe Academy until 1955. He continued painting until his death at Radolfzell in 1970.

Like most members of Die Brücke, he was a prolific printmaker: Dube’s catalogues raisonné describe with 465 woodcuts, 375 etchings, and 400 lithographs. More than 200 of them, mostly etchings, are from the last seven years of his life.

A major retrospective exhibition, Erich Heckel – His Work in the 1920s, was held October 2004 – February 2005 at the Brücke Museum in Berlin.

fuckyeahgermanexpressionism:

Promotional poster created by Fritz Bleyl advertising the first Die Brücke show in Dresden, Germany 1906

Hilmar Friedrich Wilhelm Bleyl, known as Fritz Bleyl (8 October 1880, Zwickau, Kingdom of Saxony – 19 August 1966, Bad Iburg), was a German artist of the Expressionist school, and one of the four founders of artist group Die Brücke (“The Bridge”). He designed graphics for the group including, for their first show, a poster, which was banned by the police. He left the group after only two years, when he married, to look after his family, and did not exhibit publicly thereafter.

fuckyeahgermanexpressionism:

Promotional poster created by Fritz Bleyl advertising the first Die Brücke show in Dresden, Germany 1906

Hilmar Friedrich Wilhelm Bleyl, known as Fritz Bleyl (8 October 1880, Zwickau, Kingdom of Saxony – 19 August 1966, Bad Iburg), was a German artist of the Expressionist school, and one of the four founders of artist group Die Brücke (“The Bridge”). He designed graphics for the group including, for their first show, a poster, which was banned by the police. He left the group after only two years, when he married, to look after his family, and did not exhibit publicly thereafter.

juju-be-art:

Otto Dix, Self-Portrait, 1912,
tempera and oil on panel, 49.5 x 73.6 cm,
Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit, MI, USA

Wilhelm Heinrich Otto Dix (2 December 1891 – 25 July 1969) was a German painter and printmaker, noted for his ruthless and harshly realistic depictions of Weimar society and the brutality of war. Along with George Grosz, he is widely considered one of the most important artists of the Neue Sachlichkeit.
Otto Dix was born in Untermhaus, Germany, now a part of the city of Gera. The eldest son of Franz and Louise Dix, he an iron foundry worker and she a seamstress who had written poetry in her youth, he was exposed to art from an early age. The hours he spent in the studio of his cousin, Fritz Amann, who was a painter, were decisive in forming young Otto’s ambition to be an artist; he received additional encouragement from his primary school teacher. Between 1906 and 1910, he served an apprenticeship with painter Carl Senff, and began painting his first landscapes. In 1910, he entered the Kunstgewerbeschule in Dresden (Academy of Applied Arts), where Richard Guhr was among his teachers.
When the First World War erupted, Dix enthusiastically volunteered for the German Army. He was assigned to a field artillery regiment in Dresden. In the autumn of 1915 he was assigned as a non-commissioned officer of a machine-gun unit on the Western front and took part in the Battle of the Somme. In November 1917, his unit was transferred to the Eastern front until the end of hostilities with Russia, and in February 1918 he was stationed in Flanders. Back on the western front, he fought in the German Spring Offensive. He earned the Iron Cross (second class) and reached the rank of vizefeldwebel. In August of that year he was wounded in the neck, and shortly after he took pilot training lessons. He was discharged from service in December 1918.
Dix was profoundly affected by the sights of the war, and would later describe a recurring nightmare in which he crawled through destroyed houses. He represented his traumatic experiences in many subsequent works, including a portfolio of fifty etchings called Der Krieg, published in 1924.
At the end of 1918 Dix returned to Gera, but the next year he moved to Dresden, where he studied at the Hochschule für Bildende Künste. He became a founder of the Dresden Secession group in 1919, during a period when his work was passing through an expressionist phase. In 1920, he met George Grosz and, influenced by Dada, began incorporating collage elements into his works, some of which he exhibited in the first Dada Fair in Berlin. He also participated in the German Expressionists exhibition in Darmstadt that year.
In 1924, he joined the Berlin Secession; by this time he was developing an increasingly realistic style of painting that used thin glazes of oil paint over a tempera underpainting, in the manner of the old masters. His 1923 painting The Trench, which depicted dismembered and decomposed bodies of soldiers after a battle, caused such a furore that the Wallraf-Richartz Museum hid the painting behind a curtain. In 1925 the then-mayor of Cologne, Konrad Adenauer, cancelled the purchase of the painting and forced the director of the museum to resign.
Dix was a contributor to the Neue Sachlichkeit exhibition in Mannheim in 1925, which featured works by George Grosz, Max Beckmann, Heinrich Maria Davringhausen, Karl Hubbuch, Rudolf Schlichter, Georg Scholz and many others. Dix’s work, like that of Grosz—his friend and fellow veteran—was extremely critical of contemporary German society and often dwelled on the act of Lustmord, or sexual murder. He drew attention to the bleaker side of life, unsparingly depicting prostitution, violence, old age and death.
In one of his few statements, published in 1927, Dix declared, “The object is primary and the form is shaped by the object.”
Among his most famous paintings are the triptych Metropolis (1928), a scornful portrayal of depraved actions of Germany’s Weimar Republic, where nonstop revelry was a way to deal with the wartime defeat and financial catastrophe, and the startling Portrait of the Journalist Sylvia von Harden (1926). His depictions of legless and disfigured veterans—a common sight on Berlin’s streets in the 1920s—unveil the ugly side of war and illustrate their forgotten status within contemporary German society, a concept also developed in Erich Maria Remarque’s All Quiet on the Western Front.
When the Nazis came to power in Germany, they regarded Dix as a degenerate artist and had him sacked from his post as an art teacher at the Dresden Academy. He later moved to Lake Constance in the southwest of Germany. Dix’s paintings The Trench and War cripples were exhibited in the state-sponsored Munich 1937 exhibition of degenerate art, Entartete Kunst. They were later burned.
Dix, like all other practising artists, was forced to join the Nazi government’s Reich Chamber of Fine Arts (Reichskammer der bildenden Kuenste), a subdivision of Goebbels’ Cultural Ministry (Reichskulturkammer). Membership was mandatory for all artists in the Reich. Dix had to promise to paint only inoffensive landscapes. He still painted an occasional allegorical painting that criticized Nazi ideals. His paintings that were considered “degenerate” were discovered among the 1500+ paintings hidden away by an art dealer and his son in 2012.
In 1939 he was arrested on a trumped-up charge of being involved in a plot against Hitler (see Georg Elser), but was later released.
During World War II Dix was conscripted into the Volkssturm. He was captured by French troops at the end of the war and released in February 1946.
Dix eventually returned to Dresden and remained there until 1966. After the war most of his paintings were religious allegories or depictions of post-war suffering, including his 1948 Ecce homo with self-likeness behind barbed wire. In this period, Dix gained recognition in both parts of, the then divided, Germany. In 1959 he was awarded the Grand Merit Cross of the Federal Republic of Germany (Großes Verdienstkreuz) and in 1950, he was unsuccessfully nominated for the National Prize of the GDR. He received the Lichtwark Prize in Hamburg and the Martin Andersen Nexo Art Prize in Dresden to mark his 75th birthday in 1967. Dix was made an honorary citizen of Gera. Also in 1967 he received the Hans Thoma Prize and in 1968 the Rembrandt Prize of the Goethe Foundation in Salzburg.
Dix died on 25 July 1969 after a second stroke in Singen am Hohentwiel. He is buried at Hemmenhofen on Lake Constance.
Dix had three children: a daughter Nelly (1923-1955) and two sons, Ursus (1927-2002) and Jan (* 1928).

juju-be-art:

Otto Dix, Self-Portrait, 1912,

tempera and oil on panel, 49.5 x 73.6 cm,

Detroit Institute of Arts, Detroit, MI, USA

Wilhelm Heinrich Otto Dix (2 December 1891 – 25 July 1969) was a German painter and printmaker, noted for his ruthless and harshly realistic depictions of Weimar society and the brutality of war. Along with George Grosz, he is widely considered one of the most important artists of the Neue Sachlichkeit.

Otto Dix was born in Untermhaus, Germany, now a part of the city of Gera. The eldest son of Franz and Louise Dix, he an iron foundry worker and she a seamstress who had written poetry in her youth, he was exposed to art from an early age. The hours he spent in the studio of his cousin, Fritz Amann, who was a painter, were decisive in forming young Otto’s ambition to be an artist; he received additional encouragement from his primary school teacher. Between 1906 and 1910, he served an apprenticeship with painter Carl Senff, and began painting his first landscapes. In 1910, he entered the Kunstgewerbeschule in Dresden (Academy of Applied Arts), where Richard Guhr was among his teachers.

When the First World War erupted, Dix enthusiastically volunteered for the German Army. He was assigned to a field artillery regiment in Dresden. In the autumn of 1915 he was assigned as a non-commissioned officer of a machine-gun unit on the Western front and took part in the Battle of the Somme. In November 1917, his unit was transferred to the Eastern front until the end of hostilities with Russia, and in February 1918 he was stationed in Flanders. Back on the western front, he fought in the German Spring Offensive. He earned the Iron Cross (second class) and reached the rank of vizefeldwebel. In August of that year he was wounded in the neck, and shortly after he took pilot training lessons. He was discharged from service in December 1918.

Dix was profoundly affected by the sights of the war, and would later describe a recurring nightmare in which he crawled through destroyed houses. He represented his traumatic experiences in many subsequent works, including a portfolio of fifty etchings called Der Krieg, published in 1924.

At the end of 1918 Dix returned to Gera, but the next year he moved to Dresden, where he studied at the Hochschule für Bildende Künste. He became a founder of the Dresden Secession group in 1919, during a period when his work was passing through an expressionist phase. In 1920, he met George Grosz and, influenced by Dada, began incorporating collage elements into his works, some of which he exhibited in the first Dada Fair in Berlin. He also participated in the German Expressionists exhibition in Darmstadt that year.

In 1924, he joined the Berlin Secession; by this time he was developing an increasingly realistic style of painting that used thin glazes of oil paint over a tempera underpainting, in the manner of the old masters. His 1923 painting The Trench, which depicted dismembered and decomposed bodies of soldiers after a battle, caused such a furore that the Wallraf-Richartz Museum hid the painting behind a curtain. In 1925 the then-mayor of Cologne, Konrad Adenauer, cancelled the purchase of the painting and forced the director of the museum to resign.

Dix was a contributor to the Neue Sachlichkeit exhibition in Mannheim in 1925, which featured works by George Grosz, Max Beckmann, Heinrich Maria Davringhausen, Karl Hubbuch, Rudolf Schlichter, Georg Scholz and many others. Dix’s work, like that of Grosz—his friend and fellow veteran—was extremely critical of contemporary German society and often dwelled on the act of Lustmord, or sexual murder. He drew attention to the bleaker side of life, unsparingly depicting prostitution, violence, old age and death.

In one of his few statements, published in 1927, Dix declared, “The object is primary and the form is shaped by the object.”

Among his most famous paintings are the triptych Metropolis (1928), a scornful portrayal of depraved actions of Germany’s Weimar Republic, where nonstop revelry was a way to deal with the wartime defeat and financial catastrophe, and the startling Portrait of the Journalist Sylvia von Harden (1926). His depictions of legless and disfigured veterans—a common sight on Berlin’s streets in the 1920s—unveil the ugly side of war and illustrate their forgotten status within contemporary German society, a concept also developed in Erich Maria Remarque’s All Quiet on the Western Front.

When the Nazis came to power in Germany, they regarded Dix as a degenerate artist and had him sacked from his post as an art teacher at the Dresden Academy. He later moved to Lake Constance in the southwest of Germany. Dix’s paintings The Trench and War cripples were exhibited in the state-sponsored Munich 1937 exhibition of degenerate art, Entartete Kunst. They were later burned.

Dix, like all other practising artists, was forced to join the Nazi government’s Reich Chamber of Fine Arts (Reichskammer der bildenden Kuenste), a subdivision of Goebbels’ Cultural Ministry (Reichskulturkammer). Membership was mandatory for all artists in the Reich. Dix had to promise to paint only inoffensive landscapes. He still painted an occasional allegorical painting that criticized Nazi ideals. His paintings that were considered “degenerate” were discovered among the 1500+ paintings hidden away by an art dealer and his son in 2012.

In 1939 he was arrested on a trumped-up charge of being involved in a plot against Hitler (see Georg Elser), but was later released.

During World War II Dix was conscripted into the Volkssturm. He was captured by French troops at the end of the war and released in February 1946.

Dix eventually returned to Dresden and remained there until 1966. After the war most of his paintings were religious allegories or depictions of post-war suffering, including his 1948 Ecce homo with self-likeness behind barbed wire. In this period, Dix gained recognition in both parts of, the then divided, Germany. In 1959 he was awarded the Grand Merit Cross of the Federal Republic of Germany (Großes Verdienstkreuz) and in 1950, he was unsuccessfully nominated for the National Prize of the GDR. He received the Lichtwark Prize in Hamburg and the Martin Andersen Nexo Art Prize in Dresden to mark his 75th birthday in 1967. Dix was made an honorary citizen of Gera. Also in 1967 he received the Hans Thoma Prize and in 1968 the Rembrandt Prize of the Goethe Foundation in Salzburg.

Dix died on 25 July 1969 after a second stroke in Singen am Hohentwiel. He is buried at Hemmenhofen on Lake Constance.

Dix had three children: a daughter Nelly (1923-1955) and two sons, Ursus (1927-2002) and Jan (* 1928).

Marianne von Werefkin (Russian Мариамна/Марианна Владимировна Веревкина) (10 September [O.S. 29 August] 1860, Tula, Russia – 6 February 1938, Ascona, Switzerland), born Marianna Wladimirowna Werewkina (transliteration Marianna Vladimirovna Verëvkina), was a Russian-Swiss Expressionist painter.
Marianne von Werefkin was born in the Russian town of Tula as the daughter of the commander of the Ekaterinaburg Regiment. She had her first private academic drawing lessons at the age of fourteen. In 1880, she became a student of Ilya Repin, the most important painter of Russian Realism. Her progress was dealt a setback by a hunting accident in 1888 in which she accidentally shot her right hand which remained crippled after a lengthy period of recovery. By practicing persistently she finally managed to use drawing and painting instruments with her right hand again.
In 1892 she met Alexej von Jawlensky, who desired to be her protégé, and in 1896 she, Jawlensky, and their servant moved to Munich. For the sake of Jawlensky’s painting, Werefkin interrupted her painting for almost ten years. She initiated a Salon in Munich which soon became a center of lively artistic exchange. She also founded the “Lukasbruderschaft” of which also Kandinsky was a member.
She began painting again in 1906. In 1907 she created her first expressionist works; in these she followed Paul Gauguin’s and Louis Anquetin’s style of “surface painting”, while also showing the influence of Edvard Munch. She and Jawlensky spent in 1908 several periods working with Kandinsky and Münter after their discovery of the picturesque rural town of Murnau near Munich, where Gabriele Münter owned a house. The four artists frequently painted together in open air in and around Murnau.
They founded a new artist-group in 1909, the Neue Künstlervereinigung München (New Association of Artists in Munich, NKVM). It became a forum of exhibitions and programming. After a few years Wassily Kandinsky and Franz Marc distanced themselves from this group and formed the Blauer Reiter (Blue Rider). The group was founded by a number of Russian emigrants, including Wassily Kandinsky, Alexej von Jawlensky and a number of native German artists, such as Franz Marc, August Macke and Gabriele Münter. Werefkin began exhibiting together with this group in 1913.
At the outbreak of the First World War, Werefkin and Jawlensky immigrated to Switzerland, near Geneva. They later moved to Zurich. By 1918, they had separated, and Werefkin moved alone to Ascona, on Lago Maggiore where she painted many colorful, landscapes in an expressionist style. In 1924 she founded the artist group “Großer Bär” (i.e., Big Bear, Ursa Major).
In her later years, she painted posters. Her friends “Carmen” and “Diego Hagmann” protected her from poverty.
Marianne von Werefkin died in Ascona on 6 February 1938. She was buried in the Russian graveyard in Ascona.

Marianne von Werefkin (Russian Мариамна/Марианна Владимировна Веревкина) (10 September [O.S. 29 August] 1860, Tula, Russia – 6 February 1938, Ascona, Switzerland), born Marianna Wladimirowna Werewkina (transliteration Marianna Vladimirovna Verëvkina), was a Russian-Swiss Expressionist painter.

Marianne von Werefkin was born in the Russian town of Tula as the daughter of the commander of the Ekaterinaburg Regiment. She had her first private academic drawing lessons at the age of fourteen. In 1880, she became a student of Ilya Repin, the most important painter of Russian Realism. Her progress was dealt a setback by a hunting accident in 1888 in which she accidentally shot her right hand which remained crippled after a lengthy period of recovery. By practicing persistently she finally managed to use drawing and painting instruments with her right hand again.

In 1892 she met Alexej von Jawlensky, who desired to be her protégé, and in 1896 she, Jawlensky, and their servant moved to Munich. For the sake of Jawlensky’s painting, Werefkin interrupted her painting for almost ten years. She initiated a Salon in Munich which soon became a center of lively artistic exchange. She also founded the “Lukasbruderschaft” of which also Kandinsky was a member.

She began painting again in 1906. In 1907 she created her first expressionist works; in these she followed Paul Gauguin’s and Louis Anquetin’s style of “surface painting”, while also showing the influence of Edvard Munch. She and Jawlensky spent in 1908 several periods working with Kandinsky and Münter after their discovery of the picturesque rural town of Murnau near Munich, where Gabriele Münter owned a house. The four artists frequently painted together in open air in and around Murnau.

They founded a new artist-group in 1909, the Neue Künstlervereinigung München (New Association of Artists in Munich, NKVM). It became a forum of exhibitions and programming. After a few years Wassily Kandinsky and Franz Marc distanced themselves from this group and formed the Blauer Reiter (Blue Rider). The group was founded by a number of Russian emigrants, including Wassily Kandinsky, Alexej von Jawlensky and a number of native German artists, such as Franz Marc, August Macke and Gabriele Münter. Werefkin began exhibiting together with this group in 1913.

At the outbreak of the First World War, Werefkin and Jawlensky immigrated to Switzerland, near Geneva. They later moved to Zurich. By 1918, they had separated, and Werefkin moved alone to Ascona, on Lago Maggiore where she painted many colorful, landscapes in an expressionist style. In 1924 she founded the artist group “Großer Bär” (i.e., Big Bear, Ursa Major).

In her later years, she painted posters. Her friends “Carmen” and “Diego Hagmann” protected her from poverty.

Marianne von Werefkin died in Ascona on 6 February 1938. She was buried in the Russian graveyard in Ascona.

nickkahler:

Egon Schiele, Portrait of Arnold Schönberg, 1917

Arnold Schoenberg (13 September 1874 – 13 July 1951) was an Austrian composer and painter, associated with the expressionist movement in German poetry and art, and leader of the Second Viennese School. After his move to the United States in 1934, he altered the spelling of his surname from Schönberg to Schoenberg.
Schoenberg’s approach, both in terms of harmony and development, has been one of the most influential of 20th-century musical thought. Many European and American composers from at least three generations have consciously extended his thinking, whereas others have passionately reacted against it. During the rise of the Nazi Party in Austria, Schoenberg’s works were labelled as degenerate music.
Schoenberg was known early in his career for simultaneously extending the traditionally opposed German Romantic styles of Brahms and Wagner. Later, his name would come to personify innovations in atonality (although Schoenberg himself detested that term) that would become the most polemical feature of 20th-century art music. In the 1920s, Schoenberg developed the twelve-tone technique, an influential compositional method of manipulating an ordered series of all twelve notes in the chromatic scale. He also coined the term developing variation, and was the first modern composer to embrace ways of developing motifs without resorting to the dominance of a centralized melodic idea.
Schoenberg was also a painter, an important music theorist, and an influential teacher of composition; his students included Alban Berg, Anton Webern, Hanns Eisler, Egon Wellesz, and later John Cage, Lou Harrison, Earl Kim, Leon Kirchner, and other prominent musicians. Many of Schoenberg’s practices, including the formalization of compositional method, and his habit of openly inviting audiences to think analytically, are echoed in avant-garde musical thought throughout the 20th century. His often polemical views of music history and aesthetics were crucial to many significant 20th-century musicologists and critics, including Theodor W. Adorno, Charles Rosen and Carl Dahlhaus, as well as the pianists Artur Schnabel, Rudolf Serkin, Eduard Steuermann and Glenn Gould.
Schoenberg’s archival legacy is collected at the Arnold Schönberg Center in Vienna.

nickkahler:

Egon Schiele, Portrait of Arnold Schönberg, 1917

Arnold Schoenberg (13 September 1874 – 13 July 1951) was an Austrian composer and painter, associated with the expressionist movement in German poetry and art, and leader of the Second Viennese School. After his move to the United States in 1934, he altered the spelling of his surname from Schönberg to Schoenberg.

Schoenberg’s approach, both in terms of harmony and development, has been one of the most influential of 20th-century musical thought. Many European and American composers from at least three generations have consciously extended his thinking, whereas others have passionately reacted against it. During the rise of the Nazi Party in Austria, Schoenberg’s works were labelled as degenerate music.

Schoenberg was known early in his career for simultaneously extending the traditionally opposed German Romantic styles of Brahms and Wagner. Later, his name would come to personify innovations in atonality (although Schoenberg himself detested that term) that would become the most polemical feature of 20th-century art music. In the 1920s, Schoenberg developed the twelve-tone technique, an influential compositional method of manipulating an ordered series of all twelve notes in the chromatic scale. He also coined the term developing variation, and was the first modern composer to embrace ways of developing motifs without resorting to the dominance of a centralized melodic idea.

Schoenberg was also a painter, an important music theorist, and an influential teacher of composition; his students included Alban Berg, Anton Webern, Hanns Eisler, Egon Wellesz, and later John Cage, Lou Harrison, Earl Kim, Leon Kirchner, and other prominent musicians. Many of Schoenberg’s practices, including the formalization of compositional method, and his habit of openly inviting audiences to think analytically, are echoed in avant-garde musical thought throughout the 20th century. His often polemical views of music history and aesthetics were crucial to many significant 20th-century musicologists and critics, including Theodor W. Adorno, Charles Rosen and Carl Dahlhaus, as well as the pianists Artur Schnabel, Rudolf Serkin, Eduard Steuermann and Glenn Gould.

Schoenberg’s archival legacy is collected at the Arnold Schönberg Center in Vienna.

dappledwithshadow:

Gabriele Münter (German, 1877-1962)

Gabriele Münter (19 February 1877– 19 May 1962) was a German expressionist painter. She was at the forefront of the Munich avant-garde in the early 20th century. Artists and writers associated with German Expressionism shared a rebellious attitude (influenced by the writings of Friedrich Nietzsche) toward the materialism and mores of German imperial and bourgeois society. German Expressionistic art was an exegetic (and at times agonizing) reaction against the ambiguities and formalism of pre-World War I society. Its radical art and avant-garde mentality sought to end the alienation of painting from society.

Münter was born to upper middle class parents in Berlin. Regardless of the times, her family supported her desires to become an artist. She began to draw as a child. As she was growing up, she had a private tutor, and took classes at the Woman’s Artist School, since she was not allowed to enroll in the German Academies because of her gender. She didn’t feel challenged by her current school, so she decided to take her studies elsewhere. Both of her parents had died by the time she was twenty-one, and she was living at home with no occupation. In 1898, she decided to take a trip to America with her sister to visit extended family. They stayed in America for over two years, mainly in the states of Texas, Arkansas, and Missouri. Both girls had inherited a large amount of money, allowing them to live freely and independently. Her childhood and early adulthood greatly impacted her future artistic career. She had a free and unrestricted life that was unconstrained by convention. Living in America and Europe had given Münter social exposure that many women did not have at the time. She began taking classes at the Munich’s progressive new Phalanx School, where she studied woodcut techniques, sculpture, painting, and printmaking. Soon after she began taking classes, Münter became attached to the Phalanx School’s director, the Russian painter Wassily Kandinsky.[1] Kandinsky was the first teacher that had actually taken Münter’s painting abilities seriously. In the summer of 1902, Kandinsky invited Münter to join him at his summer painting classes just south of Munich in the Alps. She accepted, and their relationship became more personal than professional.

She was a driven artist and was dedicated to the German Expressionist movement. She kept a journal and documented her journeys with a state-of-the-art camera. She was familiar with many of the more famous artists of the time; in one of her journals, she stated that she wanted to learn from the avant-garde artists in France. By 1907, Münter had filled several sketchbooks, over 450 pages. She made a number of linoleum prints during her time studying Gauguin’s work. She sometimes painted with a palette knife. In Paris, she began to perfect her woodcut technique, which became faster and more accurate. Münter’s work remained figurative.

In 1909 Münter began using glass as a different medium. This was a process that had been adopted by Kandinsky, Franz Marc, August Macke, and Heinrich Campendonk. But Münter was the first one to actually copy the traditional practices that this kind of work had to offer. Soon enough Münter and Kandinsky, along with the other artists, began painting their own designs on the glass pieces. This process she had learned during her time in Murnau, when she had discovered Bavarian and Bohemian Hinterglasmalerei, which was basically painted glass. This was one step that the group the Blaue Reiter had taken towards primitive art. This kind of art could be observed in many places in Europe at the beginning of the 20th century. Münter loved Kandinsky and worked hard to bring him and his paintings to the public eye.

Kandinsky’s and Münter’s professional and personal relationship lasted for about twelve years. During this time their relationship affected Münter’s art. Kandinsky was married for fifteen years while he was in a relationship with Münter. They spent a great deal of time together traveling through Europe including Holland, Italy, and France, as well as North Africa. It was during this time that they met Rousseau and Matisse. Münter and Kandinsky fell in love with the village of Murnau in southern Bavaria. Later on, Münter bought a house in this city and spent much of her life there. Münter and Kandinsky helped establish the Munich-based avant-garde group called the New Artists’ Association (Neue Künstlervereinigung). She contributed to a number of the most significant avant-garde exhibitions in Germany up till World War I.

In 1911 Münter, Kandinsky, and Franz Marc founded the expressionist group known as Der Blaue Reiter (The Blue Rider). Within the group, artistic approaches and aims varied amongst artists; however, they shared a common desire to express spiritual truths through art. They championed modern art, the connection between visual art and music, the spiritual and symbolic associations of color and a spontaneous, intuitive approach to painting in its move toward abstraction.

Münter was part of a small subgroup of artists active in transforming late Impressionist, Neo-Impressionist, and Jugendstil (or Art Nouveau) painting into the more radical, non-naturalistic art now identified as Expressionism. Early on, Münter developed a great interest in landscapes. Münter’s landscape paintings employ a radical Jugendstil simplicity and suggestive symbolism with softly muted colors, collapsed pictorial space and flattened forms. She enjoyed exploring the world of children; using colorful prints of children and toys, Münter shows precision and simplicity of form in her rejection of symbolic content.

Münter is most well known for her landscapes, many of which were painted in Murnau. Her composition and forms are very flat and the colors are muted and suggestive. In the early 1900s her style began to change as a result of the influence of Matisse and Fauvism, Gauguin, and van Gogh. Her paintings became more representative. Color played a large role in her work. She used a number of blues, greens, yellows, and pinks that were very unusual. She also found it important that her figures were as abstract as the rest of her piece. Even though her palette was very bright, there seems to be no happiness.

In the years to come, Kandinsky and Münter moved to neutral Switzerland during the war. But since Kandinsky was Russian, he was forced to move back to Moscow. During World War II, Münter hid Kandinsky’s works and those from other artists from the Nazis. During Kandinsky’s time in Moscow, he divorced his first wife (his cousin, Anja Chimiakin), and instead of marrying Münter, he decided to marry another woman he had met in Russia. Münter never heard from Kandinsky again.

At the end of their relationship, there were a number of images that were returned to Kandinsky, but Münter stored many of the pieces in a warehouse for many years. But once tension started to grip Europe, and condemnation of the modernist movements began to rise, she had all of the art work done by her, Kandinsky, and the other members of the Blaue Reiter transported to her house, where she hid them. In spite of her financial problems and utter spite for Kandinsky, she preserved them with care during the War. Through several house searches, the pieces were never found. On her eightieth birthday, Münter gave her entire collection, which consisted of more than 80 oil paintings and 330 drawings, to the Städtische Galerie in the Lenbachhaus in Munich. After Münter and Kandinsky’s relationship ended, there was a period of inactivity in her art career. She picked up painting again in the late 1920s after she had moved back to Germany with Johannes Eichner after the war. In 1956, Münter received a few awards such as the Culture Prize from the City of Munich. Münter’s work was exhibited in the 1960s in the US for the first time and was shown at Mannheim Kunsthalle in 1961. When she was with Johannes Eichner, she still continued to represent the movement. The Gabrielle Münter and Johannes Eichner foundation was established and has become a valuable research center for Münter’s art, as well as the art that was done by the Blaue Reiter group. Münter lived the rest of her life in Murnau, traveling back and forth to Munich. She died at home in Murnau am Staffelsee on 19 May 1962.

erretratu:

Jan Sluyters - self portrait

Johannes Carolus Bernardus (Jan) Sluijters, or Sluyters (17 December 1881, ‘s-Hertogenbosch – 8 May 1957, Amsterdam) was a Dutch painter.
Sluijters (in English often spelled “Sluyters”) was a leading pioneer of various post-impressionist movements in the Netherlands. He experimented with several styles, including fauvism and cubism, finally settling on a colorful expressionism. His paintings feature nude studies, portraits, landscapes, and still lifes.
Sluyters in 1901 became a student of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts along with Leo Gestel . Gestel and Sluyters continued to keep in close contact . In 1904 he won the Prix de Rome and married Bertha Langerhorst. The Prix de Rome scholarship earned him a trip on which he made to Italy and Spain in 1905 and 1906 study . In 1906 he was in Paris acquainted with Fauvism . The jury of the Prix de Rome considers the work he does from then to modern and therefore the annual allowance stops. From 1909 to 1911 he lived and worked at Villa Vita nuova to Hilversumseweg 22-24 Laren NH, where he divorced Bertha in 1910. In 1911 he moved to Amsterdam and visits with Leo Gestel Paris again . In 1913 he married Greet Cooten , who often would stand model for his paintings . In 1917 he became a member of the Hague Pulchri artist’s studio , and in 1920 he became a voting member of the Amsterdam Arti et Amicitiae . He has also been a member of St. Luke Artist Association .  In 1929 he was member of the jury at the first Miss Holland elections . The following years gained increasing fame Sluyters and the number of exhibitions devoted to his work increasing.
Sluyters painted landscapes and cityscapes alongside a lot of portraits . He is best known for his portraits of women , whether or not naked , and to a lesser extent for his portraits of children. He also painted colored people and people from the society .
Sluyters painted in all styles , but always figurative. The painting which won the Prix de Rome was still in academic style . For his acquaintance with Fauvism and Post- Impressionism , his style was based on the symbolism and art nouveau . Through his visits to Paris, his style became more expressive and more joined in with Cubism and Futurism . During this period he was also inspired by Kees van Dongen and Piet Mondrian. Along with Mondrian and Leo Gestel he also worked in the style of Luminism . This renewed the Dutch painting and produced Sluyters a reputation as a pioneer of Dutch modernism . This is especially true appreciation for his work from the period from 1906 to 1916.
After the First World War, some experimentation was reduced and he painted quite realistically but with its distinctive bright colors . He painted numerous commissioned prominent compatriots and became a society painter .
Sluyters was an inspiration for, among others, Piet Mondrian and later Cobra movement.

erretratu:

Jan Sluyters - self portrait

Johannes Carolus Bernardus (Jan) Sluijters, or Sluyters (17 December 1881, ‘s-Hertogenbosch – 8 May 1957, Amsterdam) was a Dutch painter.

Sluijters (in English often spelled “Sluyters”) was a leading pioneer of various post-impressionist movements in the Netherlands. He experimented with several styles, including fauvism and cubism, finally settling on a colorful expressionism. His paintings feature nude studies, portraits, landscapes, and still lifes.

Sluyters in 1901 became a student of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts along with Leo Gestel . Gestel and Sluyters continued to keep in close contact . In 1904 he won the Prix de Rome and married Bertha Langerhorst. The Prix de Rome scholarship earned him a trip on which he made to Italy and Spain in 1905 and 1906 study . In 1906 he was in Paris acquainted with Fauvism . The jury of the Prix de Rome considers the work he does from then to modern and therefore the annual allowance stops. From 1909 to 1911 he lived and worked at Villa Vita nuova to Hilversumseweg 22-24 Laren NH, where he divorced Bertha in 1910. In 1911 he moved to Amsterdam and visits with Leo Gestel Paris again . In 1913 he married Greet Cooten , who often would stand model for his paintings . In 1917 he became a member of the Hague Pulchri artist’s studio , and in 1920 he became a voting member of the Amsterdam Arti et Amicitiae . He has also been a member of St. Luke Artist Association .  In 1929 he was member of the jury at the first Miss Holland elections . The following years gained increasing fame Sluyters and the number of exhibitions devoted to his work increasing.

Sluyters painted landscapes and cityscapes alongside a lot of portraits . He is best known for his portraits of women , whether or not naked , and to a lesser extent for his portraits of children. He also painted colored people and people from the society .

Sluyters painted in all styles , but always figurative. The painting which won the Prix de Rome was still in academic style . For his acquaintance with Fauvism and Post- Impressionism , his style was based on the symbolism and art nouveau . Through his visits to Paris, his style became more expressive and more joined in with Cubism and Futurism . During this period he was also inspired by Kees van Dongen and Piet Mondrian. Along with Mondrian and Leo Gestel he also worked in the style of Luminism . This renewed the Dutch painting and produced Sluyters a reputation as a pioneer of Dutch modernism . This is especially true appreciation for his work from the period from 1906 to 1916.

After the First World War, some experimentation was reduced and he painted quite realistically but with its distinctive bright colors . He painted numerous commissioned prominent compatriots and became a society painter .

Sluyters was an inspiration for, among others, Piet Mondrian and later Cobra movement.

artmastered:

Alexej von Jawlensky, Self Portrait, 1905

Alexej Georgewitsch von Jawlensky (13 March 1864 – 15 March 1941) was a Russian expressionist painter active in Germany. He was a key member of the New Munich Artist’s Association (Neue Künstlervereinigung München), Der Blaue Reiter (The Blue Rider) group and later the Die Blaue Vier (The Blue Four).
Alexej von Jawlensky was born in Torzhok, a town in Tver Governorate, Russia, as the fifth child of Georgi von Jawlensky and his wife Alexandra (née Medwedewa). At the age of ten he moved with his family to Moscow. After a few years of military training, he became interested in painting, visiting the Moscow World Exposition c. 1880. Thanks to his good social connections, he managed to get himself posted to St. Petersburg and, from 1889 to 1896, studied at the art academy there, while also discharging his military duties. Jawlensky gained admittance to the circle of Ilya Repin, where he met Marianne von Werefkin, one of Repin’s former students and a wealthy artist four years Jawlensly’s senior who gave up her career to promote his work and provide him with a comfortable lifestyle.
Free to pursue his artistic vision, he moved to Munich in 1894, where he studied in the private school of Anton Ažbe. In 1905 Jawlensky visited Ferdinand Hodler, and two years later he began his long friendship with Jan Verkade and met Paul Sérusier. Together, Verkade and Sérusier transmitted to Jawlensky both practical and theoretical elements of the work of the Nabis, and Synthetist principles of art.
In Munich he met Wassily Kandinsky and various other Russian artists, and he contributed to the formation of the Neue Künstlervereinigung München. His work in this period was lush and richly coloured, but later moved towards abstraction and a simplified, formulaic style. Between 1908 and 1910 Jawlensky and Werefkin spent summers in the Bavarian Alps with Kandinsky and his companion Gabriele Münter. Here, through painting landscapes of their mountainous surroundings, they experimented with one another’s techniques and discussed the theoretical bases of their art. Following a trip to the Baltic coast, and renewed contact with Henri Matisse in 1911 and Emil Nolde in 1912, Jawlensky turned increasingly to the expressive use of colour and form alone in his portraits.
Expelled from Germany in 1914, he moved to Switzerland. He met Emmy Scheyer in 1916 (Jawlensky gave her the affectionate nickname, Galka, a Russian word for crow), another artist who abandoned her own work to champion his in the United States. After a hiatus in experimentation with the human form, Jawlensky produced perhaps his best-known series, the Mystical Heads (1917–19), and the Saviour’s Faces (1918–20), which are reminiscent of the traditional Russian Orthodox icons of his childhood.
In 1922, after marrying Werefkin’s former maid Hélène Nesnakomoff, the mother of his only son, Andreas, born before their marriage, Jawlensky took up residence in Wiesbaden. In 1924 he organized the Blue Four, whose works, thanks to Scheyer’s tireless promotion, were jointly exhibited in Germany and the USA. From 1929 Jawlensky suffered from progressively crippling arthritis, which necessitated a reduced scale and finally forced a cessation in his painting in 1937. He began to dictate his memoirs in 1938. He died in Wiesbaden, Germany, on 15 March 1941. He and his wife Helene are buried in the cemetery of St. Elizabeth’s Church, Wiesbaden.

artmastered:

Alexej von Jawlensky, Self Portrait, 1905

Alexej Georgewitsch von Jawlensky (13 March 1864 – 15 March 1941) was a Russian expressionist painter active in Germany. He was a key member of the New Munich Artist’s Association (Neue Künstlervereinigung München), Der Blaue Reiter (The Blue Rider) group and later the Die Blaue Vier (The Blue Four).

Alexej von Jawlensky was born in Torzhok, a town in Tver Governorate, Russia, as the fifth child of Georgi von Jawlensky and his wife Alexandra (née Medwedewa). At the age of ten he moved with his family to Moscow. After a few years of military training, he became interested in painting, visiting the Moscow World Exposition c. 1880. Thanks to his good social connections, he managed to get himself posted to St. Petersburg and, from 1889 to 1896, studied at the art academy there, while also discharging his military duties. Jawlensky gained admittance to the circle of Ilya Repin, where he met Marianne von Werefkin, one of Repin’s former students and a wealthy artist four years Jawlensly’s senior who gave up her career to promote his work and provide him with a comfortable lifestyle.

Free to pursue his artistic vision, he moved to Munich in 1894, where he studied in the private school of Anton Ažbe. In 1905 Jawlensky visited Ferdinand Hodler, and two years later he began his long friendship with Jan Verkade and met Paul Sérusier. Together, Verkade and Sérusier transmitted to Jawlensky both practical and theoretical elements of the work of the Nabis, and Synthetist principles of art.

In Munich he met Wassily Kandinsky and various other Russian artists, and he contributed to the formation of the Neue Künstlervereinigung München. His work in this period was lush and richly coloured, but later moved towards abstraction and a simplified, formulaic style. Between 1908 and 1910 Jawlensky and Werefkin spent summers in the Bavarian Alps with Kandinsky and his companion Gabriele Münter. Here, through painting landscapes of their mountainous surroundings, they experimented with one another’s techniques and discussed the theoretical bases of their art. Following a trip to the Baltic coast, and renewed contact with Henri Matisse in 1911 and Emil Nolde in 1912, Jawlensky turned increasingly to the expressive use of colour and form alone in his portraits.

Expelled from Germany in 1914, he moved to Switzerland. He met Emmy Scheyer in 1916 (Jawlensky gave her the affectionate nickname, Galka, a Russian word for crow), another artist who abandoned her own work to champion his in the United States. After a hiatus in experimentation with the human form, Jawlensky produced perhaps his best-known series, the Mystical Heads (1917–19), and the Saviour’s Faces (1918–20), which are reminiscent of the traditional Russian Orthodox icons of his childhood.

In 1922, after marrying Werefkin’s former maid Hélène Nesnakomoff, the mother of his only son, Andreas, born before their marriage, Jawlensky took up residence in Wiesbaden. In 1924 he organized the Blue Four, whose works, thanks to Scheyer’s tireless promotion, were jointly exhibited in Germany and the USA. From 1929 Jawlensky suffered from progressively crippling arthritis, which necessitated a reduced scale and finally forced a cessation in his painting in 1937. He began to dictate his memoirs in 1938. He died in Wiesbaden, Germany, on 15 March 1941. He and his wife Helene are buried in the cemetery of St. Elizabeth’s Church, Wiesbaden.