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Exhibitions - Ludwig Museum

Current exhibitions and preview of forthcoming exhibitions

Balthus – Aufgehobene Zeit. Gemälde und Zeichnungen 1932 bis 1960

In Autumn of 2007 the Museum Ludwig will show a small exhibition of choice works by the French artist Balthus (Balthasar Klossowski, 29.02.1908-18.02.2001). Preceding the hundredth anniversary of Balthus’s birth by one year, it will be the first show devoted to the artist in Germany. Balthus has always been considered an outsider who kept aloof from the contemporary art movements of his time. Critics have regarded him as an oddity that adopted an Old Master technique, however the artist himself always declared that he strove for a realism that is “timeless.”
Balthus’s first exhibition at the Galerie Pierre in Paris in 1934 was what the period liked to call a “scandal,” and just what he had intended. In his handful of large paintings he subverted familiar subjects – a girl at a window, in front of a mirror, at her toilette or receiving a music lesson – by turning them into scenes of hard-edged eroticism with a strongly sadomasochistic undercurrent.
Although Balthus was born to German parents, his work is little known and has not been collected by any museum in Germany. The aim of our exhibition is to remedy this and acquaint finally the German audience with his work. After Edward Hopper and Salvador Dalí the Museum Ludwig thus continues the series of monographical exhibitions devoted to great painters of the 20th century.

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