Group Dynamics

The Blue Rider since

After a heated debate in which the antagonists almost came to blows, Wassily Kandinsky, Franz Marc, and Gabriele Münter resigned from the Neue Künstlervereinigung München (New Artists’ Association Munich) on December 2, 1911. A mere two weeks after the confrontation, they and their fellow dissenters mounted a counter-exhibition at Galerie Thannhauser in Munich. Alongside their own art, they presented works by August Macke, Robert Delaunay, Elisabeth Epstein, Albert Bloch, David and Vladimir Burliuk, Heinrich Campendonk, Arnold Schoenberg, and Henri Rousseau. The full title, "The First Exhibition of the Editorial Board of 'Der Blaue Reiter'", made explicit reference to their almanac project: the programmatic yearbook that put the Blue Rider on the map as a circle of artists who saw themselves as members of a global creative community transcending historical periods and distinctions of genre.

"The whole body of work we call art knows neither borders nor nations but only humanity": that is how Kandinsky and Marc put it in their almanac The Blue Rider, which came out in 1912. The credo inspired the Lenbachhaus to put together a new presentation that embeds the Blue Rider artists’ works in the sweeping history of art and culture that the almanac illustrates. For the first time, the exhibition allows visitors to study with their own eyes the interconnections between Bavarian and Russian folk art, Japanese woodcuts, children’s drawings, contemporary music and the works of Balinese, Gabonese, Oceanian, Sri Lankan, Mexican, and Egyptian art reproduced in the almanac. The dialogue between outstanding works and artifacts on loan from other museums and the beloved classics from the Lenbachhaus’s own collection opens up new perspectives on the Blue Rider artists’ high-minded vision.

In keeping with the project’s focus on "group dynamics," one guiding idea of the exhibition is to highlight the circle’s collective creative processes: separate galleries are dedicated to their stays in Murnau and Sindelsdorf, where they sketched and painted side by side, and to reconstructions of the first and second exhibitions at Galerie Thannhauser and Galerie Hans Goltz in Munich. The presentation also rethinks the story of the Blue Rider as it has long been told, in which a "central cast" around Münter, Kandinsky, Marc, Macke, and Klee eclipsed other important members of the group including Elisabeth Epstein and Maria Franck-Marc.

Last but not least, the project scrutinizes the ways in which European colonialism informed the group’s conception of art. Their imagination constrained by the pre-World War I mentality of imperialism triumphant, the Blue Rider artists, like others, failed to put into practice an emancipatory idea of art that transcended the European horizon. Still, their conviction that the artistic productions of all peoples and times were ultimately of equal value was groundbreaking and remains a vital inspiration today.

The project is supported by the German Federal Cultural Foundation as part of its program "Global Museum. Collections of the 20th Century from a Global Perspective." The new presentation of art from the Blue Rider collection is followed by a second exhibition "Group Dynamics—Collectives of the Modernist Period", dedicated to international artists’ groups, that is scheduled to be on view from October 19, 2021, until April 24, 2022.

Curated by Annegret Hoberg, Matthias Mühling, Anna Straetmans

A cooperation of the Lenbachhaus and the Gabriele Münter and Johannes Eichner Foundation

The Lenbachhaus participates in the project "MuSeenLandschaft Expressionismus," with the exhibition "Group Dynamics—The Blue Rider." The exhibition series "Avant-Garde in Color. Blue Rider, Brücke, Expressionism" also takes visitors to the Buchheim Museum in Bernried on the shore of Lake Starnberg, the Schlossmuseum Murnau, the Franz Marc Museum in Kochel am See, and the Museum Penzberg—Sammlung Campendonk.

The project "Group Dynamics"

The second exhibition "Collectives of the Modernist Period"

The Symposium

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Works

  • Albert Bloch
    Harlequinade / Harlekinade, 1911
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  • Erma Bossi
    Zirkus, 1909
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  • Erma Bossi
    Interieur mit Lampe, 1909
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  • Wladimir Burljuk
    Die Tänzerin, um 1910
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  • Wladimir Burljuk
    Die Bäume, 1911
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  • Heinrich Campendonk
    Schalmeibläserin, 1914
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  • Robert Delaunay
    Eiffelturm, 1911
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  • Elisabeth Iwanowna Epstein
    Selbstporträt, 1911
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  • Elisabeth Iwanowna Epstein
    Selbstporträt, 1911
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  • Maria Franck-Marc
    Heilige 3 Könige , um 1911/1912
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  • Maria Franck-Marc
    Tanzende Schafe, 1908
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  • Maria Franck-Marc
    Kinderspielzeug mit Vogelkäfig, um 1911
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  • Pierre Girieud
    Bildnis der Malerin Emilie Charmy, 1908
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  • Alexej von Jawlensky
    Sitzender weiblicher Akt, um 1910
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  • Alexej von Jawlensky
    Sommerabend in Murnau, 1908-1909
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  • Alexej von Jawlensky
    Bildnis des Tänzers Alexander Sacharoff, 1909
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  • Alexej von Jawlensky
    Murnauer Landschaft, 1909
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  • Alexej von Jawlensky
    Stillleben mit Früchten, um 1910
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  • Alexej von Jawlensky
    Skizze aus Murnau, 1908-09
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  • Andreas Jawlensky
    Rote Blumen auf rosa Tisch, 1910
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  • Alexej von Jawlensky
    Reife, um 1912
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  • Eugen von Kahler
    Badende, 1910-1911
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  • Eugen von Kahler
    Liebesgarten, 1910-1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Plakat für die erste Ausstellung der Neuen Künstlervereinigung München, 1909
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  • Alexander Kanoldt
    Eiserne Brücke, 1911
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  • Alexander Kanoldt
    Welke Blumen, 1910
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Murnau – Blick über den Staffelsee, Sommer 1908
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Murnau – Blick aus dem Fenster des Griesbräu, 1908
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Murnau – Schloss und Kirche, 1909
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Murnau - Grüngasse, 1909
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Kochel - Friedhof und Pfarrhaus, 1909
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Kochel – Gerade Straße, 1909
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Murnau – Berglandschaft mit Kirche, Sommer 1910
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Studie zu "Winter No. II", Winter 1910/1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Eisenbahn bei Murnau, 1909
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Studie zur Improvisation Nr. 2 (Trauermarsch), 1909
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Interieur (Mein Esszimmer), 1909
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Berg, 1909
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Orientalisches, 1909
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Improvisation 6 (Afrikanisches), 1909
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Impression VI (Sonntag), 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Die Kuh, 1910
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Murnau mit Kirche I, 1910
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Allerheiligen II, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Improvisation 26 (Rudern), 1912
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Allerheiligen I, Juli/August 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Improvisation 18 (mit Grabstein), 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Impression III (Konzert), 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Improvisation 19, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    St. Georg III, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Improvisation 21a, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Romantische Landschaft, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Improvisation 19a, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Heiliger Georg I, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Allerheiligen I, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    St. Georg II, vermutlich Sommer 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Mit Sonne, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Apokalyptische Reiter I, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Große Auferstehung, Frühsommer 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Heiliger Wladimir, Juni 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Aquarell Nr. 8 'Jüngster Tag', 1911/1912
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Aquarell Nr. 3 (Liebesgarten), 1911/1912
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf zu 'Improvisation 24 (Troika II)', 1911/1912
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf zu 'Komposition II', um 1910
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf für den Farbholzschnitt 'Bogenschütze', um 1910
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf für den Umschlag des Almanachs 'Der Blaue Reiter', Sommer 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf für den Umschlag des Almanachs 'Der Blaue Reiter', Sommer 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf für den Umschlag des Almanachs 'Der Blaue Reiter', Sommer 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf für den Umschlag des Almanachs 'Der Blaue Reiter', Sommer 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf für den Umschlag des Almanachs 'Der Blaue Reiter', Sommer 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf für den Umschlag des Almanachs 'Der Blaue Reiter', Sommer 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf für den Umschlag des Almanachs 'Der Blaue Reiter', Sommer 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Endgültiger Entwurf für den Umschlag des Almanachs 'Der Blaue Reiter', 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf für den Umschlag des Almanachs 'Der Blaue Reiter', 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf für den Umschlag des Almanachs 'Der Blaue Reiter', Sommer 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Einbandentwurf für 'Über das Geistige in der Kunst', um 1910
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Entwurf zu 'Allerheiligen II (Komposition mit Heiligen)', 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Lyrisches, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Apokalyptische Reiter II, Juli 1914
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Rudern, um 1912
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Kuh in Moskau, Mai 1912
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Heiliges Abendmahl, 1909/10
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Auferstehung (Jüngstes Gericht), August 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Engel des Jüngsten Gerichts (Fragment Jüngstes Gericht), August 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Phantasievogel und schwarzer Panther, Juni 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Mit gelbem Pferd, 1909
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Glasbild mit Schwan, um 1912
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Allerheiligen II, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Der heilige Gabriel, 1911
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Dame in Moskau, 1912
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Glasbild mit rotem Fleck, um 1913
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  • Wassily Kandinsky
    Kavalier mit Trompete, um 1912
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  • Paul Klee
    Das Schlachtfeld, 1913, 2 (A)
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  • Paul Klee
    Figuren, Postkarte aus München an Alfred Kubin in Wernstein/Zwickledt, 19. Juni 1913
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  • Paul Klee
    Vier Figuren an zwei Tischen, 1912, 28
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  • Paul Klee
    Tänzerin, 1912, 29 (A)
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  • Paul Klee
    Straßen-Zweigung, 1913, 27 (B)
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  • Paul Klee
    Wunderbarer Fischzug, 1913, 126 (A)
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  • Paul Klee
    Heilige Steine und Götterbilder, 1913, 141 (A)
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  • Paul Klee
    Groteske Frauenfigur, Postkarte aus München an Gabriele Münter in Murnau, 26. Juni 1913
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  • Alfred Kubin
    Gewitter, 1906
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  • Alfred Kubin
    Arche Noah: Die Landung, 1911
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  • Alfred Kubin
    Schlangen in der Stadt, 1911
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  • Alfred Kubin
    Buddhist im Walde, um 1907
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  • Alfred Kubin
    Begegnung, um 1911
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  • Alfred Kubin
    Der Luftgeist, 1912
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  • Alfred Kubin
    Mädchen und Tiere im Wald, 1912
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  • Alfred Kubin
    Die Ahnung, 1906
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  • Alfred Kubin
    Verpuppte Welt, 1906
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  • August Macke
    Der Geist im Hausgestühl: Stillleben mit Katze, 1910
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  • August Macke
    Drei Mädchen in einer Barke, 1912
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  • August Macke
    Türkisches Café, 1914
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  • August Macke
    Porträt mit Äpfeln, 1909
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  • August Macke
    Promenade, 1913
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  • August Macke
    Zoologischer Garten I, 1912
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  • August Macke
    Kinder mit Ziege, 1913
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  • August Macke
    Unsere Straße in Grau, 1911
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  • August Macke
    Hutladen, 1913
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  • August Macke
    Ausladen eines Lastkahnes, 1912
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  • August Macke
    Männer am Ufer, 1912
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  • August Macke
    Blumen im Garten, Clivia und Pelargonien, 1911
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  • August Macke
    Im Zirkus, 1911
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  • August Macke
    Unser Häuschen in Tegernsee, 1910
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  • August Macke
    Flusslandschaft mit Angler, 1911
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  • August Macke
    Zwei Mädchen in Landschaft, 1911
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  • Franz Marc
    Der Panther, 1908
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  • Franz Marc
    Weidende Pferde I, 1910
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  • Franz Marc
    Kühe, rot, grün, gelb, 1911
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  • Franz Marc
    Fabeltier, 1912
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  • Franz Marc
    Zwei Pferde, 1908/09
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  • Franz Marc
    Tiger, 1912
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  • Franz Marc
    Reh im Walde II, 1912
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  • Franz Marc
    Reh im Klostergarten, 1912
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  • Franz Marc
    Blaues Pferd I, 1911
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  • Franz Marc
    Rehe im Schnee II, 1911
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  • Franz Marc
    Das Äffchen, 1912
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  • Franz Marc
    Vögel, 1914
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  • Franz Marc
    Rotes und blaues Pferd, 1912
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  • Franz Marc
    Bildnis Henri Rousseau, 1911
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  • Franz Marc
    Zinnobergruss, Postkarte aus Sindelsdorf an Wassily Kandinsky in München, 19. April 1913
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  • Franz Marc
    Altarschaf aus Lana, Postkarte aus Sindelsdorf an Gabriele Münter in München, 11. April 1913
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  • Franz Marc
    Rotes und Blaues Pferd, Postkarte aus Sindelsdorf an Wassily Kandinsky in München, 5. April 1913
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  • Franz Marc
    Vier Füchse, Postkarte aus Sindelsdorf an Wassily Kandinsky in München, 4. Februar 1913
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  • Wilhelm Morgner
    Die Holzarbeiter, 1911
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Spreufuhren, 1910/11
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Äpfel und Narzissen, 1909
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Blick aufs Murnauer Moos, 1908
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Jawlensky und Werefkin, 1908/09
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Grabkreuze in Kochel, 1909
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Herbstlich, 1910
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Mann am Tisch (Kandinsky), 1911
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Stillleben mit Heiligem Georg, 1911
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Votivbild, um 1908/09
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Bayerische Landschaft mit Einödhof, um 1910
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Kandinsky und Erma Bossi am Tisch, 1912
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Auguste ist krank (Spielzeug Nr. 1), 1908
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Tünnes und Gesellschaft (Spielzeug Nr. 2), 1908
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Onkel Sam und Gesellschaft (Spielzeug Nr. 3), 1908
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Im Gespräch (Spielzeug Nr. 4), 1908
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Gute Nacht (Spielzeug Nr. 5), 1908
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Landschaft mit Regenbogen, 1911
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Entwurf zu 'Kandinsky und Erma Bossi am Tisch', 1910
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Berglandschaft (Dorf vor Gebirge), 1911
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Braumeister Schöttl vom Angerbräu Murnau, um 1910
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Kruzifix in Landschaft, um 1910
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Die Heiligen Franz Seraph und Julie, um 1910
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Die Hl. Theresia, um 1908/09
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  • Gabriele Münter
    S. Maria, um 1908/09
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Murnauer Bäuerin mit Kindern, um 1909/10
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Madonna mit Kind, um 1909/10
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  • Gabriele Münter
    Murnau von der Wasserseite, um 1910
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  • Marianne von Werefkin
    Wäscherinnen, um 1909
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  • Marianne von Werefkin
    In die Nacht hinein, 1910
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Installation views