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Fascinating discovery – Unique contemporary document of Lea Grundig to be auctioned.

09-20-2010 07:34 PM CET | Arts & Culture

Press release from: Ketterer Kunst

Lea Grundig, Holocaust (Aufstand), 1943 (detail). Pen and India ink drawing. 45,6x60 cm (17.8 x 23.6 in). Est.: EUR 15.000-20.000.

Lea Grundig, Holocaust (Aufstand), 1943 (detail). Pen and India ink drawing. 45,6x60 cm (17.8 x 23.6 in). Est.: EUR 15.000-20.000.

Munich, 20 September 2010, (kk) – John Phillips, famous for his striking photo articles in the American Life Magazine, discovered it in Israel. Lea Grundig’s work “Holocaust (Aufstand)“ came via New York to Ketterer Kunst in Munich, where it will be auctioned off on 22 October. A work from the 1940s like this, made by one of the most important artists of the 20th century, has never been offered on the international auction market before.

With great commitment, Lea Grundig used her talents to fight for the improvement of degrading living conditions. Similar to Käthe Kollwitz, she employed her creative means to full extent. "I always wanted to depict people so that the observer gets an idea of their misery and suffering and is enraged about it.", said Lea Grundig in Gesichte und Geschichte (Berlin 1958. p.93). And indeed, her figures show the artist’s passion and have a direct emotional expression.

The daughter of Jewish merchants studied art against her parent’s will, at first at the Dresden School of Applied Arts and later at the Dresden Academy of Art. She attended the master class of Otto Gußmann together with artists such as Otto Griebel, Wilhelm Lachnit and her later husband Hans Grundig.

She addressed the grave situation of the working class, documented the terrors of the Holocaust and eventually worked up the dramatic impressions made on her escape. Relentlessly, she denounced fascism, inanity and blindness and illustrated the appalling conditions on the “Pacific“, a so-called coffin ship on which those Jews who managed to flee the Holocaust were brought to Palestine refugee camps at the risk of loosing their lives. “Holocaust (Aufstand)“ was presumably made in this context, too. The work is a haunting account of the people’s panic in the confined and gloomy room.

Lea Grundig‘s works are impressive documents of these inhumane conditions. By bringing back such dramatic events to the observers‘ memory, she, and also the photo journalist John Phillips, make a decisive contribution to a collective awareness and for positive changes.

This work is part of the auction Modern Art/ Side lines of the German Avant-garde.

Selected works
05 - 07 October, Ketterer Kunst, Meßberg 1, Hamburg
09 - 14 October, Ketterer Kunst, Fasanenstr. 70, Berlin

All works
16 - 28 October, Ketterer Kunst, Joseph-Wild-Str. 18, Munich-Riem (fairgrounds)

Ketterer Kunst, Joseph-Wild-Str. 18, Munich-Riem (Messe)
22 Oct., 3 p.m. - Modern Art and Sidelines of the German Avant-garde
23 Oct., 3 p.m. - Post War/Contemporary Art
29 Oct., 4:30 p.m. - Old Masters and Art of the 19th Century

Since it was founded in 1954, Ketterer Kunst has been firmly established in the front ranks of auction houses dealing in art and rare books, with its headquarters in Munich and a branch in Hamburg. Gallery rooms in Berlin as well as a representative in Krefeld have contributed substantially to the company's success. Ketterer Kunst has further rounded off its portfolio with the prestigious Ernest Rathenau Verlag, New York/Munich. In addition, exhibitions, special theme and charity auctions as well as online auctions are regular events at Ketterer Kunst.


Ketterer Kunst
Joseph-Wild-Str. 18
81829 München
Tel. +49-(0)55244-444
Fax.: +49-(0)55244-177

For press enquiries:

Michaela Derra M.A.
Telefon: +49-(0)89-55244-152 (Fax: -177)

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