Das Verborgene Museum shows landscapes, effigies and poupées portraits. The German-Latvian artist Johann Walter-Kurau, who ran a painting school in Dresden from 1906 and in Berlin from 1917 to 1932, was especially popular with women on the course because he supported them on the difficult road to a professional career. Women still had to rely on private art lessons because, until the Weimar Republic was founded in 1919, they were not admitted to art academies.
Views of nature by Walter-Kurau’s students range from lofty perspectives across valleys and lakes to close-ups of tree clusters and flowering meadows. The plein-air situation explains the small format of the card, barely 25 x 30 cm, attached to the lid of a wooden paint box with drawing pins. Else Lohmann’s stylistic independence clearly grew between 1917 and 1921. There are landscapes broken up into geometric shapes under the influence of Expressionism, like when red roofs tilted into the plane dominate the work along with sunlit slopes. In her studio, her portraits in the style of New Objectivity acquired formats of up to 90 x 80 cm. Other female artists who attended Walter-Kurau's school were Minna Köhler-Roeber, Ilse Heller-Lazard, Elisabeth von Schulz, Bettina Encke von Arnim. In addition, paintings by Käthe Loewenthal, Augusta von Zitzewitz, Else Hertzer, Martel Schwichtenberg, Grethe Jürgens and others can be seen in the exhibition.
Unlike in Germany, women in France were already able to study art at the state-run École des Beaux Arts from the late 19th century. They also continued to attend the many private institutes. Marie Vassilieff (1884-1957), who arrived in Paris from St Petersburg in 1905, attended first the Académie la Palette and then the Académie Matisse before founding her own Académie Russe/Vassilieff in 1910. Apart from art influenced by Cubism and Constructivism, Vassilieff began after the First World War to produce what she called her “poupée portraits”, grotesque dolls and puppets, but also head and full-body sculptures of famous people, made of leather, metal, cloth and rags, buttons, glass beads, wire, feathers.
WOMEN ARTISTS IN DIALOGUE
Free forms and bold colours
11th April – 11th August 2019
Opening Hours: Thu & Fri 15.00 – 19.00 / Sat & Sun 12.00 – 16.00
DAS VERBORGENE MUSEUM
Dokumentation der Kunst von Frauen e.V.,
Schlüterstraße 70, 10625 Berlin
Opening: 10th April 2019, 19.00