Forthcoming Exhibitions - Kunsthalle der Bundesrepublik

Rome and the Barbarians
Europe during the Migration Period
22 August - 7 December 2008
An exhibition of the Palazzo Grassi, Venice, and the Art and Exhibition Hall of the Federal Republic of Germany, Bonn
Confronted with the persistent and momentous invasions of barbarian hordes into the territory of the Roman Empire, Saint Jerome wrote in 396: “The Roman Empire is collapsing.” In fact, the incisive political, social, and cultural changes that shook the Hellenistic-Roman world from the 4th to the 7th century AD led to massive migration movements among Germanic and horse nomadic tribes. This migration, which occurred in several waves, ultimately brought about the collapse of the Western Roman Empire and was followed by new forms of governance and the emergence of a multifaceted Roman-Barbarian culture. At the same time the vast geographical region between the Baltic Sea and the Black Sea saw the outbreak of an unprecedented series of confrontations between various peoples, among them Goths, Gepids, Alamanni and Huns, and their subsequent redistribution across Europe. The exhibition presents a systematic account of these complex processes. What set this mass migration in motion, who were the main actors of the events, how did the Empire react? The richly varied selection of magnificent weapons and riding harnesses, precious jewellery, luxurious status symbols, as well as functional articles of everyday use, cult objects and exquisite burial gifts makes the distant era of the migration period come alive.

Gandhara – The Buddhist Heritage of Pakistan
Legends, Monasteries, and Paradise
21 November 2008 - 15 March 2009
To the Western viewer the Buddhist art of Gandhara seems strangely familiar; its rootedness in Western traditions is strikingly obvious. Gandhara is the name of a region in present-day Pakistan whose connection with the West can be traced back to the far-flung conquests of Alexander the Great (330 BC) and his local successors. Alexander’s foray laid the foundation for the trade along the Silk Road between the Roman Empire and the Far East and southern Asia. The Silk Road was also instrumental in the spread of Buddhism beyond its native India.
The Art and Exhibition Hall is pleased to be able to present the first major exhibition of Gandharan art in Germany. Some 270 outstanding objects – among them exquisite stone sculptures, highly detailed reliefs, precious coins and elaborate jewellery – introduce the visitor to the art of the ancient kingdom from the 1st to the 5th century AD. The presentation highlights the multifaceted artistic production of Gandhara under Kushan rule and explores the rich artistic heritage of the region, a melting pot of many different cultures.
The exhibition focuses on stone reliefs depicting the life of the Buddha. Depicted for the first time under Kushan rule, the Buddha is shown wearing a pleated garment reminiscent of the Roman toga. Greek subjects are also prominent and coins feature Greek inscriptions. The exhibition places Gandharan art in a wider context, from the establishment of Greek culture in the region to its legacy in Central Asia and present-day Afghanistan. This legacy garnered worldwide attention when the gigantic rock-cut Buddha sculptures of Bamiyan were destroyed by the Taliban in March 2001.

Amedeo Modigliani
new date: 17 April - 30 August 2009
Amedeo Modigliani was one of the most important artists of the 20th century. His iconic works are deeply engrained in the collective pictorial memory. The Art and Exhibition Hall wants to celebrate this outstanding artist, who died tragically young at the age of only 35, with a comprehensive retrospective exhibition.
Born in Italy in 1884, Modigliani was painter, draughtsman and sculptor. With the exception of a handful of landscapes, his creative energy was entirely devoted to portraits and nudes. Modigliani's paintings are deeply rooted in Italian art history, drawing particularly on the formal languages of the Renaissance and Mannerism. These he combined with elements from Expressionism, Cubism and Symbolism as well as African sculpture, whose perceived primitivism and iconic presence fascinated him and many avant-garde artists of the time. His work cannot be easily classified as belonging to any of the contemporary styles like Cubism or Fauvism. Yet it bears eloquent testimony to the restlessness and exuberance of an artist who was only too aware of his own vulnerability and mortality and who needed the euphoria of intoxication in order to live and work. Modigliani’s idiosyncratic, at times melancholy portraits captivate the viewer to this day.
The exhibition follows the biography of the artist and reflects the decisive turning points of his life. The Art and Exhibition Hall hopes to be able to present a representative selection of some 70 paintings, 30 drawings and a few sculptures from 1909 to 1919 that allows viewers to form an impression of the oeuvre of this exceptional artist.

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