In 1913, Franz Marc articulated what many now regard as a portent of the First World War in his painting “The Tower of Blue Horses”. The painting, a masterpiece of German Expressionism, became the property of the Berlin Nationalgalerie in 1919 and was one of the museum’s major attractions during the Weimar Republic. Although stigmatised by the Nazis as “Degenerate Art”, it survived the Second World War unscathed and was last sighted in Berlin-Zehlendorf in 1948. Since then its whereabouts have become a matter of speculation.
Seventy years later, the Haus am Waldsee had decided to make the unknown fate of the painting the subject of an artistic, scientific and literary research project. Twelve internationally renowned artists in Berlin and eight in Munich have been invited to reflect on the work, its history and fate in painting, drawing, sculpture and installation, film, photography and literature from today’s point of view and in dialogue with leading art scholars. All of the works focused on the central themes of transition, disappearance, rediscovery and reassessment. For the exhibition the Haus am Waldsee was cooperating with the Neue Pinakothek in Munich. The Museum Boijmans van Beuningen in Rotterdam has confirmed that it will bring the exhibition to the Netherlands in 2018.
The curators regarded the exhibitions as a contribution to the international scientific debate on looted art. Museum goers have been confronted not only with known facts, but also possible scenarios. Ideally, the entire event and resulting publicity will lead to the recovery of the “Tower of Blue Horses”.
Artistic director: Katja Blomberg
Participating artists in Berlin: Martin Assig, Norbert Bisky, Birgit Brenner, Johanna Diehl, Marcel van Eeden, Julia Franck, Arturo Herrera, Via Lewandowsky, Rémy Markowitsch, Peter Rösel
Participating artists in Munich: Viktoria Binschtok, Tatjana Doll, Slawomir Elsner, Jana Gunstheimer, Thomas Kilpper, Dierk Schmidt