The early 20th century Renaissance of the woodcut in Germany
During the first part of the 20th century one of the most significant and enduring contributions to the history of western art is provided to us by the German artists who worked in the medium of woodcut. It is the woodcut which is considered the most German of all printing techniques.
The first attempts of Ernst-Ludwig Kirchner in this technique were still close to Art-Nouveau and the woodcut soon developed into the foremost medium with several Brücke artists, corresponding closest to their mentality. The position of German artists remained in European and even global comparison unrivaled. Karl Schmidt-Rottluff excelled in this medium, but also Ernst-Ludwig Kirchner and Erich Heckel created masterpieces in woodcut. Others, such as Otto Dix and Max Beckmann, also experimented in this technique, although it was more difficult for them to access it. For many German artists from the 1910s – 1920s the woodcut acquired the same status as painting.
In presenting selected prints related in subject matter and printing date, we would like to highlight the technical and stylistic mannerisms of individual artists. Simultaneously, it is the influence of European art (Cubism and Futurism etc.) and Non-European art (African and Tribal) which we intend to show in characteristic examples in our booth at Art Basel 2018.