Kleiner Schlossplatz 1
D-70173 Stuttgart, Deutschland
di en zo 10.00-18.00 wo t/m vr 10.00-21.00 entree € 5,00
The opening of Kunstmuseum Stuttgart's new building on Kleiner Schlossplatz marked the beginning of a new chapter in the museum's history. Stuttgart's art collection has finally found a suitable home. With 5000 m² the collection now has ample space to spread its wings. The cube, the only part of the building visible from the outside, will house three to four special exhibitions a year. The two subterranean levels, which stretch out as far as Theodor-Heuss-Straße, are the perfect setting for the permanent collection. This is regularly complemented by smaller, temporary exhibitions, which explore particular aspects in greater depth or provide a contrast, such as the exhibition series »Frischzelle«. The collection lives off the interaction between continuity and change, rediscovery and surprise. While most visitors will be familiar with the paintings of Otto Dix, exciting new additions include Wolfgang Laib's fragrant beeswax sculptures and Rebecca Horn's unsettling swinging chair installation.
Stuttgart art collection's move into its striking new building at the heart of the city and its name change from Städtische Galerie (Municipal Gallery) to Kunstmuseum Stuttgart symbolizes the start of a new, more international era. The museum has built on its existing structures to combine old and new approaches, and its exhibitions now address current, international issues, focusing on four main themes: the ornament (in Adolf Hölzel's work, for example), politics and social critique (Otto Dix), subversion and irony (particularly in the work of Dieter Roth) and the often blurred line between "free" and "applied" art (e.g Adolf Hölzel, Ida Kerkovius, Oskar Schlemmer and Willi Baumeister).
Collection history In 1924 Count Silvio della Valle di Casanova laid the foundation for the Stuttgart art collection, donating his private collection of Swabian impressionist paintings. The collection went on display in May 1925 in Villa Berg, originally constructed for the crown prince of Württemberg. In 1943 the building was unfortunately destroyed in air raids and many works of arts were lost. It was not until 1961 that the Gallery of the City of Stuttgart found a new exhibition site in Theodor Fischer's reconstructed art building on Schlossplatz. Eugen Keuerleber, who had been curator of the municipal art collection since 1945, was appointed gallery director. He envisaged the institution - in contrast to the internationally oriented Staatsgalerie - as a museum of 19th and 20th century art from Baden-Württemberg. Keuerleber decided to concentrate on four main areas: Swabian impressionists, Adolf Hölzel and his entourage, Otto Dix, and the region's contemporary art. The world's greatest array of Dix's works remains the nucleus of the municipal art collection. Plans to give the gallery and its growing inventory a new building of its own go back as far as the late 1970s. In 1986 Johann-Karl Schmidt was appointed director. He brought with him a new, superregional outlook. He concentrated on collecting and exhibiting contemporary artists with a connection to South West Germany by virtue of origin or place of work, particularly those of international standing such as Joseph Kosuth, Dieter Krieg, Wolfgang Laib, Markus Lüpertz, Dieter Roth and K. R. H. Sonderborg. Prominent art collections were added as permanent donations. Rudolf and Bertha Frank contributed in 1992, the Konrad Knöpfel-Stiftung Fritz Winter in 1994 and Etta and Otto Stangl in 2001. In 1998 the Willi Baumeister Archives, the Stuttgart-based estate of Willi Baumeister, was promised to the new museum upon completion. The last major acquisition, under the curatorship of current director Marion Ackermann, was the Teufel collection with works of Concrete Art.
The Collection Kunstmuseum Stuttgart's collection spans the period from the end of the 18th century to the present day. Its strength lies in themed groups of works illustrating individual artistic outlooks or representing particular epochs. The exhibits from the 18th and 19th centuries have a notably regional flavour. Paintings from artists such as Philipp Friedrich Hetsch and Johann Baptist Seele are examples of South West German classicism, and although few in number, they are of outstanding quality. Swabian impressionism is mainly represented in the works of Otto Reiniger, Christian Landenberger and Hermann Pleuer.
Hölzel, Heckel, Klee – Classical Modernism I The collection's 20th century section opens with numerous paintings and works on paper by Adolf Hölzel, who taught at the academy of art in Stuttgart from 1905 onwards. His students achieved international renown and three of them - Johannes Itten, Oskar Schlemmer and Willi Baumeister - are also on show here. The artist groups "Brücke" and "Der Blaue Reiter", based in Dresden and Munich respectively, sought to modernize art around the same time as Hölzel. Both are represented in the collection. Rudolf and Bertha Frank and Etta and Otto Stangl generously donated important German expressionist paintings and drawings by Erich Heckel, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, Franz Marc and Paul Klee, considerably enriching the collection of Kunstmuseum Stuttgart.
Dix, Winter, Baumeister – Classical Modernism II The Kunstmuseum owns 250 works by Otto Dix, making it the largest Dix collection in the world. The centerpiece of the numerous character portraits and landscapes are the triptych "Großstadt" (1927/28) and "Die Tänzerin Anita Berber" (1925). Major permanent loans from the Otto Dix Foundation in Vaduz, including "Nelly mit Spielzeug" (also 1925), complete the holdings. For several decades now, Landesbank Baden-Württemberg has been indispensable in building up the Dix collection. Its has sponsored activities, made donations, given loans and assisted with the purchase of artworks. Fritz Winter provides a contrast to Dix's figurative painting style. Alongside Willi Baumeister, Winter was committed to furthering abstract German art in the period after the Second World War. In 1993 the Konrad Knöpfel-Stiftung Fritz Winter handed more than 500 works over to the Kunstmuseum. This body of work spans the Bauhaus student's entire artistic career, ranging from his early drawings to his later work of the 1970s. The Willi Baumeister Archives, an extensive treasure trove of heirlooms consisting of artworks and documents, forms an integral part of the collection. It opens its doors to researchers on request.
The Kunstmuseum displays a whole spectrum of abstract art from the second half of the 20th century, including individual pieces or groups of works by artists such as Emil Schumacher, Peter Brüning, K. R. H. Sonderborg, Walter Stöhrer and Georg Karl Pfahler. The Teufel Collection offers a contrast to gestural and informel painting, featuring works of Concrete Art by Max Bill, Camille Graeser, Richard Paul Lohse, Aurélie Nemours, Manfred Mohr, Bridget Riley and others. The collection also reflects important trends in modern figurative art. Featured works include representational paintings by Horst Antes, Dieter Krieg, Lambert Maria Wintersberger, Artur Stoll, and Markus Lüpertz with his large-scale triptychs "Märchen I-III dithyrambisch" (1971/72) and "Schwarz-Rot-Gold I-III" (1974).
Roth, Kosuth, Laib – Contemporary Art The Kunstmuseum boasts a plethora of works by Dieter Roth, Joseph Kosuth and Wolfgang Laib. This is probably the only place where the stark contrast between their approaches can be experienced so intensely. The experimental openness of Dieter Roth's material collages, mould pictures and food sculptures; the severe design of Joseph Kosuth's text pictures and neon installations; and the concentrated spirituality of Wolfgang Laib's beeswax, rice, pollen and sealing wax art. The Kunstmuseum is continually expanding its collection of contemporary classics - recent additions include five sketches and a monumental wax ziggurat by Wolfgang Laib. Meanwhile, a younger generation of artists, born in the 1960s, is flying the flag for the 21st century. The latest acquisitions include works by Martin Creed, Björn Melhus, Andreas Opiolka, Caro Suerkemper, Simone Westerwinter, Georg Winter and Ekrem Yalcindag.