St. Louis is home to a world-class collection of German art, and the exhibition “Storm of Progress: German Art from the Saint Louis Art Museum” confirms that fact by displaying more than 120 works dating from the early 1800s right up to the Berlin Wall’s fall in 1989.
The strength of the museum’s holdings owes much to Morton D. May, who once led May Department Stores Co. nationwide. His passions included German Expressionism, and his 1983 bequest included a large collection of paintings by Max Beckmann (1884–1950). That gift spurred the museum to prioritize acquisitions of important works by contemporary German artists.
Now totaling more than 2,500 objects by artists from Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, the museum’s holdings continue to grow. A recent purchase is Sunburst in the Riesengebirge, one of very few U.S.-owned paintings by the Romantic Caspar David Friedrich (1774–1840).
“Storm of Progress” will showcase a range of media, including paintings, sculpture, photographs, prints, and decorative arts. Among the artists represented are Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Käthe Kollwitz, Gabriele Münter, Joseph Beuys, and Georg Baselitz.
Exhibition capacity will be limited, and visiting protocols related to COVID-19 will continue to be enforced. The exhibition is on view through February 28, 2021. For more details, please visit slam.org.