“Everyone belongs to us who directly and freely expresses what urges him to create.”
– Programmatically, a woodcut stands at the beginning of Expressionism. In 1906, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, one of the three driving forces of the Brücke (1905), printed the programme of the artists’ group as a graphic sheet. In the material and technical conditions of graphic art, Expressionist artists found ideal conditions for their demands and requirements for a new conception of art. By means of expressive lines and reduced surfaces, graphic art thus shaped the artistic work of an entire generation of artists.
Beyond the large-format, colour-intensive paintings of Expressionism, the exhibition invites visitors to come closer to the expressive power of impressive works of art by artists such as Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Erich Heckel, Otto Mueller, Emil Nolde, Max Beckmann, Paula Modersohn-Becker, Käthe Kollwitz, Hermann Scherer, Albert Müller, Ignaz Epper, Fritz Paul and Werner Neuhaus in a close-up dialogue in lithographs, etchings and woodcuts.
Thematically, the works circle the spectrum of human existence between city life and idyllic nature, showing parks and cafés, vaudeville and dance as well as landscapes, railway accidents and nocturnal scenes. In their immediacy, expressive portraits confront the viewer. While the motif of bathing women reflects the intimacy of the format, massive mountain landscapes testify to the influence that Switzerland had as a reference point in the art landscape of the time.
The occasion for the collection presentation is the parallel opening exhibition “Hermann Scherer. Notches and Edges”
(18 June to 25 September 2022).