For the first time in thirty years, a comprehensive exhibition in Switzerland will be devoted to the fascinating chapter in modern art known as “Der Blaue Reiter”. The Munich exhibition in 1911 and the art movement of the same name resulted in a revolutionary new art experience. The works by Wassily Kandinsky that belong to the Beyeler Collection will serve as a starting-point to give members of the public an insight into the work of a group of avant-garde artists whose openness and internationalism were interrupted by the First World War.
“Der Blaue Reiter” is the name of the legendary almanac published by Wassily Kandinsky (1866–1944) and Franz Marc (1880–1916, which appeared in Munich in 1912. In that book, Kandinsky and Marc brought together texts and pictures from different cultures and by different artists. The almanac was intended to document the need for a new beginning in the visual arts at the beginning of the 20th century. It testifies to a revolutionary new understanding of art and the world that centered on the visual representation of ideas rather than the reproduction of visible reality. This can be seen above all in the liberation of color, which was inspired by the landscape of the Prealps south of Munich.
The ideas that caused Kandinsky and Marc, in the first instance, to move towards abstraction culminated in a turning-point in western views on art that has left its mark on generations of painters–right up until today.
The exhibition will not only present the almanac but will also feature around 60 selected works by other artists–all of them friends of Kandinsky and Marc – who were involved in its creation.
- Kandinsky Wassily, Landscape with Rain, 1913, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, Solomon R. Guggenheim Founding Collection
- Franz Marc, Blue-Black Fox, 1911, Von der Heydt-Museum Wuppertal, © Medienzentrum, Antje Zeis-Loi / Von der Heydt-Museum Wuppertal
- Kandinsky, Wassily, Blue Mountain, 1908/09, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, Solomon R. Guggenheim Founding Collection, By gift