28 October 2010 to 24. July 2011 - Städel Annex
In Chronological Order: Städel Works of the 14th to 21st Centuries
The holdings of the Städel Museum comprise masterpieces of European art from the late Middle Ages to the present. The temporary closure of its galleries in the course of the redevelopment measures carried out in the old building as part of the Städel’s extension and of making the new building accessible via the old building offers the unique opportunity to show the museum’s familiar treasures in an entirely new context. The temporary presentation of the Städel’s collection under the title "In Chronological Order. Städel Works of the 14th to 21st Centuries” in the Exhibition Building abandons the usual separation according to regions and replaces it by a strictly chronological cross-country hanging. This approach provides a condensed art-historical timeline which grants a new, unusual and often surprising view of both familiar and still to be discovered masterpieces of the Städel and ensures that parts of its collection can also be seen during the redevelopment work. Accompanied by a chain of references to political, social, cultural and scientific key events, the presentation not only offers unconventional adjacencies, but also illustrates the development of Western painting in a unique manner.
300 paintings: from Jan van Eyck to Gerhard Richter
The exhibition encompassing twelve rooms comprises 300 paintings from the Städel’s holdings. The range of masterpieces spans from Jan van Eyck and Andrea Mantegna, Rembrandt, Nicolas Poussin, and Giovanni Battista Tiepolo to Max Beckmann, Pablo Picasso, Alberto Giacometti, and Gerhard Richter. The monthly changing comprehensive program accompanying the exhibition reflects the works chosen under various thematic focal points such as technical innovations, natural sciences, history of the theater, and history of literature. The program also includes the new series "Guest Commentaries” with people from the fields of politics, business, and science who will explain their personal views of prominent works in the Städel.
In Chronological Order
The building of large museums and the emergence of academic art history in the nineteenth century consolidated the separation of collections of paintings after regional schools. The art from the Middle Ages to the Baroque Age was categorized as Southern or Northern with the Alps providing the dividing line; in addition, artists were grouped after national schools (Italian, French, German, or English) and soon also after movements such as Symbolism, Impressionism, or Expressionism. "In Chronological Order” discards this familiar division and presents paintings from the Städel Museum from 1300 to the present in the chronological order of their making. This dense historical tour offers visitors a time travel through seven centuries of European art history, with the pictures arranged along a timeline of decisive historical events. To be found on a continuing band mounted above the paintings, the subjectively chosen political, cultural and scientific events make it possible to situate the works in their historical context and provide room for numerous associations.
Prof. Dr. Jochen Sander, head of the department Dutch, Flemish and German Painting before 1800
Dr. Felix Krämer, head of the department Painting and Sculpture, Nineteenth Century and Modern
Dr. Martin Engler, head of the department Art after 1945
Research assistants: Carolin Köchling, Almut Pollmer-Schmidt, Dr. Nerina Santorius
With support from: Techem Energy Services GmbH, City of Frankfurt am Main
With additional support from: Stadt Frankfurt am Main
23 April to 08 August 2010 - Städel Annex
Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. Retrospective
Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (1880–1938), founding member of the artists’ group "Brücke” and one of the most important representatives of Expressionism, exerted a formative influence on Classical Modern art. The Städel Museum will now pay tribute to the oeuvre of this painter, graphic artist and sculptor by assembling 170 of his works in the first Kirchner retrospective to take place in Germany for thirty years.
"I am amazed by the power of my pictures in the Städel”, Kirchner noted in his diary on 21 December 1925. His relationships to the Städel and Frankfurt were close. Not only did one of the very first Kirchner exhibitions take place in Frankfurt in 1916; in 1919 the Städel was also the first museum ever to purchase a painting by this artist. For the coming show, the museum’s own Kirchner collection – among the most prominent in the world due to the numerous major works it encompasses – will be enhanced by examples from every stage of the artist’s career. His paintings and works on paper will be placed side by side with his sculptures and crafts objects to convey the multi-faceted character of his oeuvre.
Naturally, the show will present works from the classical phases of the "Brücke period” with its depictions of nudes, compositions of the Berlin years – primarily street scenes – inspired by big city life, paintings reflecting the existential fears sparked by World War I, and the Davos works with subjects taken from the world of the Swiss Alps. These will be joined, however, by less-well-known examples from Kirchner’s early and late periods. The latter, highly controversial works in the so-called "New Style”, are surprising by virtue of their uncompromising two-dimensionality and extreme abstraction; in Frankfurt they will be on display in their entirety along with his chief works for the first time. What is remarkable in this context is the fact that, in his early work, the artist was inspired primarily by French art. The retrospective will grant a new perspective on Kirchner’s astonishing modernity, and the incomparable manner in which his extravagant lifestyle found expression in his art.
Museums in a wide range of countries – among them the Centre Pompidou in Paris, the Pinakothek der Moderne in Munich, the Kirchner Museum Davos, the Brücke Museum and the Neue Nationalgalerie in Berlin, the Moderna Museet in Stockholm and the Museum of Modern Art in New York – have agreed to support this exhibition by granting superb loans.
Curator: Dr. Felix Krämer (Städel Museum)
An exhibition within the framework of Phänomen Expressionismus
Made possible by: Gemeinnützige Kulturfonds Frankfurt Rhein Main GmbH
Supported by: Art Mentor Foundation Lucerne, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Roman Norbert Ketterer Stiftung