Berlin Realism. Käthe Kollwitz to Otto Dix
22 March to 17 June 2018
The exhibition spans from the 1890s to the 1930s and focuses on social critique in Berlin art of the period. The Berlin Secession, the first Secession in Germany with artists like Heinrich Zille, Hans Baluschek, and Käthe Kollwitz, turned to themes of social critique. The precarious living and housing situation of the growing working class during industrialization were central subjects of their works. The coming of the First World War represented a dramatic turning point. The second generation of artists shown in the exhibition, including Otto Dix, George Grosz, and Otto Nagel, no longer took up the cause of the “ordinary man,” but instead criticized the general problems of the Weimar Republic. New techniques like collage were used to warn against political developments using textual and visual material. As in no other city of the German Empire and no other major European urban center, artists in Berlin made it their task to explore subjects like war, revolution, capitalism, and social injustice and towards that end sought to collaborate with the other arts, like theatre or literature.
A catalogue will appear to mark the exhibition.
Curators: Dr. Tobias Hoffmann, Dr. Anna Grosskopf
Advertising motif: Gerwin Schmidt, 2018, (c) VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2018, for the work of Otto Nagel
Käthe Kollwitz, Arbeiter vom Bahnhof kommend (Bahnhof Prenzlauer Allee), c. 1899, Käthe Kollwitz Museum Köln
Otto Nagel, Poster “Mutter Krausens Fahrt ins Glück”, 1929, Deutsche Kinemathek – Museum für Film und Fernsehen (c) VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2018
George Grosz, Schönheit, dich will ich preisen, aus der Mappe “Ecce homo”, 1920, Deutsches Historisches Museum Berlin (c) VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn, 2018