Dark Romanticism

From Goya to Max Ernst

26 September 2012 to 20 January 2013

It was the first German exhibition to focus on the dark aspect of Romanticism and its legacy, mainly evident in Symbolism and Surrealism. In the museum’s exhibition house this important exhibition, comprising over 200 paintings, sculptures, graphic works, photographs and films, presented the fascination that many artists felt for the gloomy, the secretive and the evil. Using outstanding works in the museum’s collection on the subject by Francisco de Goya, Eugène Delacroix, Franz von Stuck or Max Ernst as a starting point, the exhibition also presented important loans from internationally renowned collections, such as the Musée d’Orsay, the Musée du Louvre, both in Paris, the Museo del Prado in Madrid and the Art Institute of Chicago. The works on display by Goya, Johann Heinrich Fuseli and William Blake, Théodore Géricault and Delacroix, as well as Caspar David Friedrich, conveyed a Romantic spirit which by the end of the 18th century had taken hold all over Europe. In the 20th century artists such as Salvador Dalí, René Magritte or Paul Klee and Max Ernst continued to think in this vein. The art works speak of loneliness and melancholy, passion and death, of the fascination with horror and the irrationality of dreams. After Frankfurt, the exhibition, conceived by the Städel Museum, travelled to the Musée d’Orsay in Paris.

CURATOR: Dr. Felix Krämer, Städel Museum
FURTHER VENUE: Musée d’Orsay, Paris, 3/5–6/9/2013
SPONSORED BY: Kulturfonds Frankfurt RheinMain as part of the project “Impuls Romantik“, with the support of the City of Frankfurt am Main