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Museum Folkwang Opens Three Exhibitions Featuring Photographs, Drawings and Posters
A man walks past photographies by US photographer Edward Steichen on display in the exhibition 'Celebrity Design'at Folkwang Museum in Essen, Germany, 05 November 2010. Three new exhibitions are on display at Folkwang Museum from 06 November on. EPA/JULIAN STRATENSCHULTE.
ESSEN.- From November 6, 2010 to 16 January 2011 the Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany, is showing three new exhibitions of the departments of Photography, Drawings and the German Poster Museum.

With the exhibition Celebrity Design – Edward Steichen, the Fotografische Sammlung is dedicating a solo exhibition to the well-known American photographer Edward Steichen (1879–1973) for the first time. The core is formed by a donation of 65 photographs by Joanna Steichen, which the Museum Folkwang in Essen received in 1983, exclusively in Germany.

In the center are Steichen’s fashion photography and photographs of prominent people from the 1920/30s, made mainly for celebrated Condé Nast magazines like Vogue and Vanity Fair. The photographs mostly show American actors and actresses such as Alla Nazimova, Lillian Gish and James Hackett. Famed people from art, sport and politics are represented by Henri Matisse, Frank Lloyd Wright and Winston Churchill. Camera settings varying according to type, scenic staging and a very creative use of light impressively accented the famous people and models he portrayed, setting new standards for portrait and fashion photography in the printed media. The exhibition presents 77 photographs, magazines and a video.

Apart from Expressionist graphic works and contemporary works, 19th century drawings and printed graphic works forms a third focal point within the Grafische Sammlung of the Museum Folkwang. Therefore Ideal Landscapes and Reality. 19th Century Drawings and Aquarelles, the last of the Grafische Sammlung’s exhibition in the Cultural Capital Year – after Wishes and Acquisitions. Contemporary Drawing and Schlemihl Wozzeck Lenz. Expressionist Series, concentrates on these holdings.

Especially worthwhile was a look at the considerable, and extensive group of drawings and aquarelles on the theme of landscape and nature – as these works show a juxtaposition of two different conceptions typical of 19th century depictions of landscapes: on the one hand a continuation of traditional principle of the ideal landscape, which can often include a mythical event, and on the other the desire to reproduce a real situation as precisely as possible. The exhibition presents around 60 works by 25 artists from German speaking countries from a period between 1785 and 1898, including works by Caspar David Friedrich, Friedrich Preller the Older, Ludwig Richter and Adrian Zingg.

On 5 June, 1883, the Train Express d’Orient (Paris-Constantinople) was the first completely luxury train which also had sleeping and dining cars, the beginning of a success story which continued, with breaks, until 1939. Even today the names of such trains stand for luxury and adventure, although, like the Orient– Express or the Transsiberian-Express, they haven’t been running for decades.

Advertising for the luxury trains demanded more than just putting up a timetable, as it was not the transport, but the experience which was sold. The exhibition shows about 30 posters of important trains around 1900 as well as about 20 made in the 1920s. Taking the train through Europe. Poster on luxurious travel around 1900 also shows around 20 posters of preferred destinations throughout Europe and the luxurious hotels there. The posters in the exhibition come from the collection Reisen in Luxus, Essen, with over 300 posters, which the Deutsche Plakat Museum in the Museum Folkwang has been housing as a permanent loan since 2008.

Museum Folkwang | Celebrity Design | Edward Steichen |


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