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MEISSEN × WASSILY KANDINSKY Edition
The graphics collection of the Moritzburg Art Museum in Halle (Saale) has been home to six of a total of nine known watercolour designs for cups and plates by Bauhaus Master Wassily Kandinsky since the 1920s. The designs were created during Kandinsky‘s time in Russia in the context of his connection to the state porcelain manufactory in St. Petersburg. They are a standout within the artist‘s oeuvre, with no other works documented within the realm of applied arts. In 1922, Kandinsky took the designs to Germany, where he re-signed them with Roman letters. Immediately after his return, he presented a cup painted according to his design at the FIRST RUSSIAN ART EXHIBITION in Berlin in autumn 1922.
Within the Kandinsky Collection of the Centre Pom¬pidou, Paris, a single cup and saucer pair remains from the artist’s personal possessions, which features MEISSEN’s trademark, two crossed blue swords.
This has led to the assumption that Kandinsky in¬tended to realize his designs in Germany with the Meissen porcelain manufactory. Using this cup as a reference point, in celebration of the Bauhaus anniver¬sary, MEISSEN together with the Cultural Foundation Saxony-Anhalt and the Moritzburg Art Museum Halle (Saale) presents all six designs by the Bauhaus Master, preserved in the museum’s collection – realized as a complete high-quality edition for the first time since their creation 100 years ago.
„A „Castle of Modernism“, the Moritzburg Art Museum Halle (Saale) remains an important museum of its time well into the 21st century.”
Wassily Kandinskys was appointed to Bauhaus in June 1922. At the time, he was already considered one of the most important proponents of modern art and a pioneer of abstraction. As Schlemmer’s successor, he headed the workshop for wall painting until October 1925, while also teaching preparatory courses on the theory of abstract form and analytical drawing. The winter term 1926/27 saw him accept the position as the painting department’s director of instruction – a positionwhich he held until the Bauhaus’ closure in 1933. As one of the genre’s founding fathers, Kandinsky created his first abstract compositions in 1911, in which impressions of nature still shimmer vaguely through as his points of departure. The pattern designs housed at the Moritzburg Art Museum Halle (Saale) – themselves acquired from Kandinsky in the late 1920s under the museum’s then director Alois J. Schardt – were also created in this artistic period.
As part of the centennial of the Bauhaus, Kandinsky, who lived together with Paul Klee in one of the Masters’ Houses designed by Walter Gropius in Dessau, will re¬ceive a great deal of attention. The exhibition BAUHAUS MASTERS MODERNISM. THE COMEBACK (Moritzburg Art Museum Halle (Saale), 29.09.2019–12.01.2020) will show all original pattern designs that inspired the MEISSEN X KANDINSKY EDITION – a rare opportu¬nity, given the fact that the light-sensitive waterco¬lour paintings can only be shown in limited intervals. What’s more, they will be on display with four original fine-art watercolour paintings created by the artist as part of the former collection of eight watercolour paintings by the artist. These paintings were bought by the museum in 1927 and 1929. The part of the exhibition dedicated to the Bauhaus Masters will also show paintings on loan from international institutions, among them the Centre Pompidou in Paris. These art works give an overview of Kandinsky’s work between 1919 and 1933, the years of the Bauhaus in Weimar, Dessau and Berlin.