This summer, members of the Collectors Circle and European Art Society experienced the best of Old Masters and Contemporary art at major museums and special exhibitions throughout Germany, including Berlin, Kassel, and Münster. CC member and docent Connie Urist writes about her experience:
Berlin, Germany – the perfect place to visit with the combined members of the European Art Society and the Collector’s Circle of Contemporary Art. For the last 70+ years Germany has faced the challenge of rebuilding – a challenge that has been met with a thoughtful (sometimes controversial) combination of rebuilding “the old” with contemporary thought and structure. This made architecture an important topic for all.
The tour began in East Berlin at the Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe (Peter Eisenman) followed by a tour and dinner at the Reichstag with its striking dome and structure by Sir Norman Foster. Visits to sites featuring contemporary art included: The Boros Collection (contemporary art housed in a bunker built by the Nazis as a civilian air-raid shelter), Hamburger Bahnhof (Berlin’s main contemporary museum featuring works by the likes of Joseph Beuys, Cy Twombly and Adrian Piper), KOW (a space featuring socially oriented videos and installations), Kunst Werke Institute for Contemporary Art, Sprüth Magers Gallery showing Thomas Ruff and Analea Saban, a visit to the apartment of Payam Sharifi of Slavs and Tatars to hear about his move to Berlin, upcoming work and recall his visit to the BMA for Art Papers Live in September 2014.
The group then moved to Kassel to see Documenta 14, a colossal exhibition held every 5 years. Based on the theme “Learning from Athens”, the largest work was Parthenon of Books in the central Friedrichsplatz. With only one day to explore, we saw many impressive sites, but only covered a small portion of the show. It was a wonderful surprise to see the BMA’s Saint Anthony Abbot Tempted by Gold as part of a contemporary installation at the Neue Gallerie.
The final stop was to see the Münster Sculpture Projects – a show held every 10 years in a charming rural college town. The day featured a walking tour thru the busy marketplace and quiet greenways followed by a bus ride to see works by Jeremy Deller (Speak To The Earth, It Will Tell you), Nicole Eisenman (Sketch For a Fountain) Pierre Huyghe (After ALife Ahead) and much more.