Aristide Maillol, Torse de l’ Eté, 1911, Bronze
Lehmbruck, Rodin and Maillol
Curators: Christoph Brockhaus, Gottlieb Leinz
Opening: Saturday, September 24, 4 p.m.
Press conference: Friday, September 23, 11.30 a.m.
Selected works by Wilhelm Lehmbruck are showcased together with corresponding works and groups of work by the two artists who supported and accompanied Wilhelm Lehmbruck's art: Auguste Rodin (1849) and Aristide Maillol (1861-1944). In the dialogue between the three, which climaxed during Lehmbruck's stay in Paris (1910-1914), there emerges, with regard to the figurative image of man, a highly varied approach to the body and the torso. as well as volume and space. Lehmbruck searched for a synthesis between the two poles of meaningful gesture on the one hand (Rodin), and harmonizing, antique calm on the other (Maillol), before finally deciding on sculpture as architecture and on the balance between masses. It is with precisely these features that his initial admiration for Rodin merges into the form of statues and eternal nature of Maillol. In addressing this theme Lehmbruck discovered his own very individual response to the entirely different works by the two "fathers of modern sculpture" so as to compose war-scarred introverted personifications of mourning and thinking, suffering and dying. The juxtaposition of Rodin's "Thinker" with Maillol's "Night" and Lehmbruck's "Fallen Man" is just as much a highlight of the exhibition as all three artists' treatment of the female torso in their major works.
In several themed rooms the exhibition places selected works by Wilhelm Lehmbruck from the museum's own collection alongside 30 sculptural works by Rodin and Maillol. Those objects on loan come from some of the best collections of these artists' work, namely the Musée Rodin and the Musée Maillol in Paris, as well as Antwerp ("La Méditeranée"), Dortmund ("Pomona") and Winterthur ("La Nuit", "Flora").