"150 Years! – Donations"

KOLUMBA archbishopric museum of art, Cologne, Germany

04. 04. 2003 - 05. 10. 2003

Artists: Joseph Beuys, Herbert Falken, Raimund Girke, Leiko Ikemura, Werner Schriefers, Paul Thek, Schriefers collection, Härle collection, a. o.

A retrospective and also perspectives of a moving history of our museum stand at the centre of our big anniversary celebration. The historical facts are all there to be read in a magazine which we are selling for a symbolic 150 cents. In the magazine you can find out why the museum was founded on 2 April 1853 by the “Society for Christian Art in the Archbishopric of Cologne”, how the purchase of an empty sugar factory came about, what was behind the “Xylographic Studio” and what people thought about the exhibition in St. Thomas’ Chapel. You can read how the museum flourished in the 1920s, how the collection survived the Second World War and the “Madonna with the Violet” was rescued just in time before Hermann Göring could seize it. Or follow the long history of the plans for the new building after we reopened at our old location at Roncalliplatz 2. A very different approach is provided by Vladimir Nabokov’s story “A Visit to the Museum” in which he presents the museum as a “Chamber of Curiosities”. In line with this story, the anniversary exhibition understands itself as a pleasant stroll through all times and genres, as an homage to our patrons, to whom we are grateful for the extraordinarily wide range of the collection. It reaches from late antiquity to the present, from Romanesque sculpture to room installation, from medieval panel painting to “radical painting”, from devotional objects to functional items which are now, thanks to the latest donation, the “Schriefers collection”, thoroughly integrated for the first time. Moreover, thanks to the support of patrons of the arts, we were able to restore several important works of the collection. They are now on exhibition for the first time in several years.

Archbishopric museum of art
Kolumbastraße 4
50667 Cologne, Germany

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