The Ecstasy of Colour

Munch, Matisse

and the Expressionists

Sept. 29, 2012 to Jan. 13, 2013

The Museum Folkwang dedicated an exceptional exhibition to one of the most fascinating chapters in early 20th century art in autumn/winter 2012/2013. It confronted, for the first time, the “Fauves”, the so-called “Wild Ones” in French art – Henri Matisse, André Derain, Maurice de Vlaminck – with the Norwegian Edvard Munch and the young German and Russian Expressionists Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Erich Heckel, Alexej von Jawlensky, Wassily Kandinsky, Gabriele Münter and Franz Marc. The Fauves chose an entirely original artistic path: redefining the relationship between art and nature in their paintings, they allowed the pictorial space to unfold through the powerful interaction of different colours.

The artist in Germany attentively followed this new painting and took it as a starting point for their own revolutionary developments. Also Edvard Munch who played a central role for the development of Expressionism.

With this exhibition, the Museum Folkwang carried on the work of Karl Ernst Osthaus, who from 1906 presented and bought works of the Fauve, the Expressionists and Edvard Munch. This early support by the Museum lead to the exhibition The Ecstasy of Colour – Munch, Matisse and the Expressionists, in which key works have shown Fauvism’s special role. It revealed a defining age for the development of art in France and especially in Germany. The Museum Folkwang was also able to contribute important works from its own collection to the project.

RWE is the exclusive sponsor of this exhibition.

The exhibition The Ecstasy of Colour – Munch, Matisse and the Expressionists was accompanied by a richly illustrated catalogue. Featuring essays by renowned authors, it illuminates the key aspects of this seminal epoch and German artists’ fruitful exchange with Munch and French artists.

The Ecstasy of Colour – Munch, Matisse and the Expressionists
Edition Folkwang / Steidl
Publisher: Museum Folkwang
Concept: Mario-Andreas von Lüttichau and Sandra Gianfreda
With essays by Birgit Dalbajewa, Claudine Grammont, Bruno Haas, Andreas Hüneke, Peter Kropmanns, Jill Lloyd, Uwe M. Schneede and further texts by Sandra Gianfreda, Ulrike Hofer, Asja Kaspers, Hans-Jürgen Lechtreck and Mario-Andreas von Lüttichau
Book design: Steidl Design / Sarah Winter
approx. 296 pages with some 220 colour illustrations
22 x 28 cm, hardcover with dust jacket
September 2012

The catalogue is unfortunately out of stock.