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Guggenheim opens last exhibition in Berlin; Shows masterpieces of Impressionism and Classic Modernism
Paul Cézanne, Still Life: Plate of Peaches (Assiette de pêches), 1879–80. Oil on canvas, 59.7 x 73.3 cm. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, Thannhauser Collection, Gift, Justin K. Thannhauser 78.2514.4.

BERLIN.- From November 15, 2012 through February 17, 2013, the Deutsche Guggenheim presents 37 masterpieces of Impressionism and Classic Modernism in its exhibition Visions of Modernity: Impressionist and Modern Collections from the Guggenheim Foundation.

Works by Paul Cézanne, Alexander Calder, Marc Chagall, Robert Delaunay, Vasily Kandinsky, Jean Miró, Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso, Vincent van Gogh, and 21 additional artists illuminate the history of the collections of the Guggenheim Foundation and its transformation from a private collection into a public museum.

This process began in 1937, when Solomon R. Guggenheim (1861–1949) established a foundation in New York with the goal of opening a museum to exhibit his holdings of modern art. The institution’s collection has since expanded through major gifts and purchases from pioneering contemporaries who also sought radical experimentation and innovation in art. These acquisitions to the Guggenheim collection include the extensive Expressionist art inventory from gallerist Karl Nierendorf (1889–1947); unparalleled collection of abstract and Surrealist work from Peggy Guggenheim (1898–1979); an array of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist masterpieces from dealer-collector Justin K. Thannhauser (1892–1976); and key bequests from museum organizers Katherine S. Dreier (1877–1952) and Hilla Rebay (1890–1967). In the Deutsche Guggenheim exhibition Visions of Modernity: Impressionist and Modern Collections from the Guggenheim Foundation, the individual collections of these six art lovers are brought together to relate the history of the artistic movements that developed from the 1880s to the 1930s. Some of the works on view elicit a sense of déjà vu; the works of Robert Delaunay and others were shown in the 1997 opening exhibition Visions of Paris 1997 in Berlin, while Marc Chagall’s Flying Carriage was shown in the exhibition Affinities to commemorate the museum’s 10-year anniversary. Visions of Modernity marks the conclusion of the partnership between Deutsche Bank and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation. At the same location on Unter den Linden, the program of the future Deutsche Bank KunstHalle will commence with the presentation of the “Artist of the Year” Imran Qureshi.

In its 15-year history, the Deutsche Guggenheim has similarly enriched the New York foundation’s original modern collection by commissioning jointly 18 new works for Berlin by some of the most exciting living artists in the early 21st century. With Visions of Modernity, the Deutsche Guggenheim not only celebrates six risk-taking collectors’ commitment to the artists whose work has come to represent the hallmarks of modernism, but also reaffirms its own enduring mission to promote the art of tomorrow.

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November 15, 2012

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