Exhibition Degenerate Art Munich 1937

Exhibition Degenerate Art Munich 1937. The National Socialists called an exhibition in Munich in 1937 “degenerate art”, where works by Nolde, Kirchner, Klee, Campendonk, Schmidt-Rotluff, Barlach and others were vilified. The works were removed from German museums and the artists were banned from publishing.

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Exhibition Degenerate Art Munich 1937

Exhibition Degenerate Art – Entartete Kunst in Munich 1937

Historical background

The exhibition “Degenerate Art” took place in Munich in 1937. It was organized by the National Socialists and aimed to defame modern works of art and label them as “degenerate.”

The National Socialists considered many forms of modern art, such as Expressionism, Dadaism, and Surrealism, to be incompatible with their National Socialist ideology. The exhibition presented works by artists such as Pablo Picasso, Wassily Kandinsky, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Emil Nolde and many others in order to denigrate them.

The works were confiscated from museums and galleries by the Nazis and presented as an example of an alleged cultural decadence and moral depravity of modern art. The exhibition was strongly propagandistic and intended to convince the public of the National Socialist ideology.

Today, the term “degenerate art” describes those works of art that were defamed and persecuted by the National Socialists. Many of the confiscated works were lost, destroyed or later sold. Some are now in museums and private collections around the world.

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