Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Karl Hofer - The Wind

Sitting here in Brooklyn, it's hard to imagine what Karl Hofer must have experienced once the Nazis took over the German government in 1933. First he was removed from his teaching position at the Berlin Academy (Lehrverbot) as a "Judeo-Marxist destructive element" and deprived of the right to exhibit (Ausstellungsverbot). In 1938, the Carnegie International jury awarded its $1.000 first prize to Hofer's The Wind, today's post here on Fifty Two Pieces.

Joseph Goebbels, the Fährer of Nazi, took umbrage with Hofer having received this award, especially for this particular painting. Many saw the two defenseless figures huddling against the wind, the ill wind faced by non-Nazi Germans. Goebbels was so furious that Hofer was subject to the most crippling of all measure taken against artists, Malverbot (deprivation of the right to paint). Described by Grunberger, Malverbot was the worst measure taken.
"Lest the Malverbot should be circumvented in the privacy of an artist's home, the Gestapo would carry out lightning raids of inspection, checking up—as in Carl Hofer's case—on whether the paint brushes were still wet. They also placed lists of proscribed artists in the paint shops, so as to cut off their supply of materials at source."
Special note: This post was written while I helped our host Rick prepare stuffed artichokes. Chop garlic, do search on Google. Zest lemon (no zester), continue to research. "Need more garlic." Chop garlic, write post. "Need onion." Chop onion, publish post. 

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