Assimilated ideas without reflection: no mentions of artistic ambitions or theories in his memoirs. Bold colors and large planes, in a Constructivist manner, expressive of a strong and original temperament. No desire for symbolism or myth.
Remained loyal to naturalistic representation. Intermediary between new movement and the wider public.
Considered the leading figure of German Expressionism, on a level with Picasso. He did not place as much importance on himself.
”I would like to express my longing for happy experiences, I do not want us to be forever regretting. Art has been and remains the part of my life that brings me happiness.”
31 December, born in Eckersbach near Zwickau.
Apprenticed to a decorator until 1900.
Student at the
Kunstgewerbeschule in Dresden until 1902. Went in for
all six classes in the annual competition only two years later and won first
prize in five. Offered a teaching position, declined.
Student at the Dresden academy –
Academie deer bildenden Kunst
(Academy of Fine Arts) until 1906.
Won the Rome prize for painting awarded by the kingdom of
Became a member of the
Brucke. Only one year of close
Coming from poverty, his designs were practicable, even as a student.
In autumn - Italy thru to 1908.
Stayed in Paris six months. Met Van Dongen and Matisse.
Moved to Berlin.
from this year he spent summers on the Kurische Nehrung,
Nidden on the Baltic.
commissions public and private for stained glass
windows, murals and mosaics.
He became the first of the Brucke to exhibit at the Berlin Secession. Sold two out of the three canvases. One to the influential industrialist Rathenau.
Rejected the new movement of the Berlin Secession.
Cofounder and chairman of the Neue Secession in Berlin.
Summer: went to Moritzburg with Kirchner and Heckel, and
then with Heckel to join Schmidt-Rottluff at Dangast.
Visited Italy. Paintings of this time influenced by Matisse.
Rejoined the Berlin Secession, expelled from the Brucke
April, his dealer Gurlitt helped him travel to the Palau Islands in the South Pacific. Became a prisoner of the Japanese, adventurous return to Germany in 1915.
Cofounder and chairman of the Novembergruppe
Member of the Prussian Academy
Three monographs and a catalogue of his graphic work had been published. Not another substantial work about him since.
Expelled from the academy and the Berlin Secession
Moved to Pomerania
Returned to Berlin. Appointed to the staff of the Hochschule fur bildende Kunst in Berlin
Died June 29 in Berlin.
1. The Expressionists. Wolf-Dieter Dube, trans by Mary Whittall. Thames and Hudson, 1972.