Ernst Kirchner


Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (1880-1938) became interested in art during a visit to Nuremberg, inspired by traditional German engravings and etchings. Joining the group known as Die Brucke in Dresden after graduating as an architect, Kirchner moved to Berlin and there, between 1911 and 1914, painted his most famous works. He called them "hieroglyphics", representations of people and street scenes in interlocking lines and unreal colours. While in the German army in 1916, Kirchner became seriously ill: he moved to Switzerland in 1917 and began painting landscapes expressing a link between man and nature. Through the 1920s he was strongly influenced by Picasso; he also mastered sculpture and the art of the woodcut. However, Kirchner never fully regained his health and committed suicide in 1938.