Nay – Variations

A retrospective to commemorate the 100th anniversary of his birth

27 September – 24 November 2002

precursor of the 20th century

The painter Ernst Wilhelm Nay (1902–1968) is one of the most significant painters of the 20th century. Not only did his work contribute substantially to the establishment of the Modern Age in Germany following World War II, but it also excellently portrays reactions to the problems of an artist’s existence, as well as European history from the 1930’s.

A new look

His 100th anniversary on Feb 11th 2002 provided the opportunity to take a new look at his work in its entirety. The concept of the exhibition went beyond the framework of most retrospectives, in that Nay’s artistic concepts in each period of his work were represented in more detail. By means of various series of works with motifs similar in form and content, Nay’s artistic thinking became evident. The artist appeared not only as an important colour painter, but also as a reflective artist, backing up his work with theoretical considerations and continually embarking on experiments. The show was organized with the Kunstmuseum Bonn, where it was shown from Dec 19th 2002 to Feb 16th 2003.

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