Mixed Doubles

The Molls and the Purrmanns: Two Artist Couples of the Modern Era

13 Oct 23 — 18 Feb 24

Hans Purrmann, Still life with red ceiling, around 1909, Photo: Wolfgang Fuhrmannek, Hessisches Landesmuseum Darmstadt © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2022

Margarete and Oskar Moll and Mathilde and Hans Purrmann were important catalysts of the European avant-garde. In Berlin, the two couples were part of the movement shortly after 1900, when German Impressionism grew increasingly expressive, and together they founded the well-attended Académie Matisse in Paris in 1908. As a result of their intimate friendship with Henri Matisse, deepened by numerous, mutual visits before the First World War — to Paris, Collioure, Munich and Berlin — French Fauvism quickly caused a sensation in Germany and was welcomed by its more progressive artists.

The exhibition features 25 of these artists’ works, tracing their similarities and idiosyncrasies, as well as carefully selected works by Lovis Corinth and Henri Matisse, pivotal sources of inspiration for the two fatefully connected couples.

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