artists & participants
An exhibition of New Painting from the Federal Republic of Germany was held on the upper floor of the museum from 23 September - 18 November 1984. The exhibition, which was compiled from works belonging to the Metzger Collection, was organized in cooperation with the Folkwang Museum in Essen. Dr. Zdenek Felix was responsible for organizing the exhibition for the Folkwang Museum. A total of 80 paintings and drawings were on display.
The following artists were represented: Hans Peter Adamski, Siegfried Anzinger, Ina Barfuss, Michael Bauch, Peter Bömmels, Werner Büttner, Walter Dahn, Georg Jiri Dokoupil, Rainer Fetting, Gerard Kever, Martin Kippenberger, Helmut Middendorf, Gerhard Naschberger, Albert Oehlen, Markus Oehlen, Andreas Schulze, Isolde Wawrin and Bernd Zimmer.
The Berlin-based "Heftige Malerei" (Violent Painters) represented a direction which, perhaps at its strongest, brings to mind German Expressionism at the beginning of this century. With his strong colours, powerful contrasts and wide brushstrokes, Helmut Middendorf pictures night life in a big city, with people dancing to the beat of ear-splitting rock music, surrounded by the frenzied atmosphere of the streets and dance clubs. Characteristic themes of Rainer Fetting include his highly charged figure studies, his figures in the shower and his variations on the theme of the portrait. Bernd Zimmer, the third Moritzplatz artist, paints monumental animal themes and landscape studies in glowing colours.
Ina Barfuss and Martin Kippenberger represent Berlin-based New Painting which has a critical attitude and a more social approach towards the overall expressive objectives of the "Violent Painters". The emphasis on social and political subjects is a characteristic feature in the work of Albert Oehlen and Werner Büttner, both of whom work in Hamburg. The works incorporate symbolism, references to literature and to themes which deeply affect mankind, such as destruction, pollution, war, violence and loneliness. The primitive features of the painting are accentuated, for the message is of principal importance rather than technical ability.
The third most important centre in New German Painting is in Cologne, whose "Mülheimer Freiheit" group of artists are represented by Hans Peter Adamski, Peter Bömmels, Walter Dahn, Georg Jiri Dokoupil, Gerard Kever and Gerhard Naschberger.
Characteristic features of these work of these artists include free variation in the style and contents of the paintings and an abundance of pictorial associations based on the subconscious and on chance. This has, in some case, taken abstract painting to its limits and introduced working methods similar to the Automatism of the Surrealists. These large-scale paintings are often inspired by a small spontaneous drawing. The artists in this group have also been interested in the opportunities afforded by collaboration.
When the exhibition ended in Tampere, it transferred to the Kunstnernes Hus in Oslo, where it was opened to the public at the beginning of 1985.
Works belonging to the collection of the Sara Hildén Foundation were exhibited on the lower floor of the museum during the same period.
Catalogue: The Metzger Collection 1984, 139 pages Museum Folkwang, Essen
only in german
German Expressionism in the Metzger Collection
Kooperation: Folkwang Museum, Essen
mit Hans Peter Adamski, Siegfried Anzinger, Ina Barfuss, Michael Bauch, Peter Bömmels, Werner Büttner, Walter Dahn, Jirí Georg Dokoupil, Rainer Fetting, Gerard Kever, Martin Kippenberger, Helmut Middendorf, Gerhard Naschberger, Albert Oehlen, Markus Oehlen, Andreas Schulze, Isolde Wawrin, Bernd Zimmer