Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz / Museum Gunzenhauser
Museum am Theaterplatz 1
artist / participant
The most extensive exhibition to date of works by the artist Karl Schmidt-Rottluff (1885–1976), born in Rottluff (known since 1926 as Chemnitz), will be on show at the Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz, Theaterplatz, from December 13, 2015 to April 10, 2016. A total of 490 works by the artist are held by the Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz, both as museum holdings and in the form of works on permanent loan. The exhibition will present works dating from 1899 to 1970, thus covering more than 70 years of the artist's creative life. The exhibition will include 60 paintings, two sculptures, more than 350 works on paper, and exhibits from the field of applied art, some of which have never been shown before.
Schmidt-Rottluff was co-founder of the artists' group the Bridge, founded 100 years ago (1905–13), and is one of the most important German artists of the 20th century. Stylistically, his painterly oeuvre is allocated to German Expressionism, of which he is considered to be a pioneer. His extensive work represents the fruits of a creative life that extended over more than seven decades. Today, works by Karl Schmidt-Rottluff constitute the central part of the Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz. The range of paintings there represents all the artist's creative periods, from early oil sketches done in his school days, to exemplary paintings from his Bridge years and the large landscapes of the 1920s and 30s, to his late painterly oeuvre up to 1963. The museum's holdings of the artist's graphic works, almost unparalleled in terms of numbers, include 134 watercolours and drawings, 234 prints—including 129 woodcuts, 53 lithographs and 39 etchings—as well as 21 printing blocks.
A tree study dated 1899, which—as indicated on the sheet—the artist drew strictly after nature, is one of the earliest witnesses at the Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz of Schmidt-Rottluff's artistic activities. At the time, Karl Schmidt was attending the Königliche Gymnasium zu Chemnitz (today the Karl Schmidt Rottluff Gymnasium). More than 70 years lie between this nature study and the latest dated abstract colour chalk drawings of 1970 in the stocks of the Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz. At that time, in Berlin, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff produced the works of art before his death in 1976.
To mark the exhibition, a 540-page catalogue will be published, in which all the works in the holdings of the Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz will be reproduced, documented, and most of them annotated.
A catalogue of applied art and jewellery from the former collection of Dr. Victor and Hedda Peters, Leipzig, will also be published.
During the course of the exhibition there will be a fringe programme with numerous lectures by renowned speakers.