What shapes a human life? For the Chemnitz artist Michael Morgner it is the experience of war and of loss, the influence of political regimes on personal freedom, death and anxiety, but also overcoming them, rising up again after blows of fate, and new beginnings after social upheavel. Morgner deals with these existential themes in his artistic work.
Morgner grew up in Einsiedel where he still lives today, apart from a few brief interruptions. In his early years he experienced the destruction of his hometown during the war and the consequences of the National Socialist dictatorship. Those early memories, the guilt of the Germans for the crimes of the Nazi regime, but also life in the GDR, are themes and experiences which have shaped Morgner’s art. He found a realm of retreat for his creative work in the collective of the artists’ group Clara Mosch (1977–1982) as well as in nature, on the beaches of Ahrenshoop or in the woods around Einsiedel. In the year of the artist’s 80th birthday, the exhibition looks back over an eventful career and an extensive oeuvre. On show are paintings and works on paper dating from different phases in his life, including works that the Kunstsammlungen acquired in 2020 through a purchase and a generous donation and that are being presented here for the first time. To underscore the topicality of Morgner’s artistic themes and expand
them by additional perspectives, the exhibition is also showing artistic positions by young artists
including Deborah Geppert, Ayala Shoshana Guy, Michelle Harder and Jana Mila Lippitz.