Zentrum Paul Klee Bern Founded by Maurice E. and Martha Müller and the heirs of Paul Klee
Th 27.08.09

Press release Opening of the Exhibition «Paul Klees Graphic Work. Eberhard W. Kornfelds Passion»

The Zentrum Paul Klee invites visitors to a journey of discovery through some exciting yet lesser-known terrain. For the first time, our new basement exhibition is featuring the full range of Klee's graphic work in all its thematic, stylistic and printed variety. At the same time, the collection pays homage to Eberhard W. Kornfeld, the prominent Bernese art dealer with a passionate expertise in Paul Klee's graphic oeuvres.

With few exceptions, Paul Klee's graphic work forms an integral part of the Zentrum Paul Klee collection. With afocus on Eberhard W. Kornfeld's outstanding personality and influence, the entire collection of etchings,woodcuts, lithographs and other printed graphic works is being presented in this exhibition for the first time. Thislittle-known category of Klee's works comprises 109 items created between 1901 and 1932. Partly arrangedchronologically and partly grouped according to subjects, the works render a graphic and concentrated insight into Klee's development as an artist.

Kornfeld's Passion

The exhibition focuses on making Kornfeld's world comprehensible to the public. Selected private objects,photographs and films reveal his personal and biographical sides - who he was as a person. Meticulous records, research and his publications provide a documentary account of his methodological-scientific side as an art expert. The various facets of Kornfeld's personality, his significance as a collector of Klee's works and his impact as an art dealer and art connoisseur - and especially as the author of the "Register of the Graphic Works of Paul Klee" (the art history reference work for Klee's graphic work) - will be clearly depicted. But above all, it is Kornfeld's passionate and intense examination of Klee's art that comes to the fore.

Paul Klee's Graphic Work

Revolving around Kornfeld's personality and impact as the heart of the exhibition, the viewer sees the full extent of the object of his longstanding passion - Klee's complete graphic works in all their diversity and depth. Grouped according to 12 subjects, but largely following the time order in which they were created, the graphic works are displayed in a variety of states (different printed versions). Drawings, watercolours, reverse paintings on glass and paintings from the Zentrum Paul Klee and the Eberhard W. Kornfeld collections that were used as models or points of reference for particular graphic works or that arose from them are likewise arranged according to thematic groups.In addition, visitors may also view the publications and portfolios to which Paul Klee contributed items -including the renowned Bauhaus portfolios with works by Lyonel Feininger, Wassily Kandinsky and OskarSchlemmer. This rich collection of prints provides an excellent opportunity to follow, in a condensed form, themany developments, phases and styles within Klee's artistic creativity.