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Program of Die Brücke (1906)

In the early twentieth century, artists formed groups to promote their common artistic and philosophical goals. Die Brücke (The Bridge), founded in Dresden in 1905, was one such group. Founding members Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Erich Heckel, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, and Fritz Bleyl aimed for a new type of art: one that conveyed intense emotion through the use of simplified forms, bright colors, and strong, sharp lines. The young artists modeled their new group on a medieval guild. In doing so, they signaled their commitment to a communal model of artistic practice and affirmed their admiration for the great graphic artists of the medieval era, namely Albrecht Dürer. Below is die Brücke’s artistic program, which Kirchner carved into wood. The text reads: “With faith in development and as a new generation of creators and connoisseurs, we call together all young people. As young people ourselves, we carry the future and want to create for ourselves freedom of life and movement against the long-established power of our elders. Everyone who conveys his creative energy directly and authentically belongs with us.”

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Program of <i>Die Brücke</i> (1906)

© by Ingeborg & Dr. Wolfgang Henze-Ketterer, Wichtrach/Bern