Past Exhibitions

All Good Art is Political

Käthe Kollwitz and Sue Coe

October 26, 2017 - March 10, 2018

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

July 11, 2017 - October 13, 2017

The Woman Question

Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele and Oskar Kokoschka

March 14, 2017 - June 30, 2017

You Say You Want a Revolution

American Artists and the Communist Party

October 18, 2016 - March 4, 2017

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

July 12, 2016 - October 7, 2016

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner

Featuring Watercolors and Drawings from the Robert Lehman Collection

March 29, 2016 - July 1, 2016

Paula Modersohn-Becker

Art and Life

November 3, 2015 - March 19, 2016

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

July 21, 2015 - October 16, 2015

Leonard Baskin


April 23, 2015 - July 2, 2015

Alternate Histories

Celebrating the 75th Anniversary of the Galerie St. Etienne

January 15, 2015 - April 11, 2015

Marie-Louise Motesiczky

The Mother Paintings

October 7, 2014 - December 24, 2014

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

July 15, 2014 - September 26, 2014


Father & Son, Inside & Out

April 24, 2014 - July 3, 2014

Modern Furies

The Lessons and Legacy of World War I

January 21, 2014 - April 12, 2014

Käthe Kollwitz

The Complete Print Cycles

October 8, 2013 - December 28, 2013

Recent Acquisitions

And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market

July 9, 2013 - September 27, 2013

Face Time

Self and Identity in Expressionist Portraiture

April 9, 2013 - June 28, 2013

Story Lines

Tracing the Narrative of "Outsider" Art

January 15, 2013 - March 30, 2013

Egon Schiele's Women

October 23, 2012 - December 28, 2012

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

July 17, 2012 - October 13, 2012

Mad As Hell!

New Work (and Some Classics) by Sue Coe

April 17, 2012 - July 3, 2012

The Ins and Outs of Self-Taught Art

Reflections on a Shifting Field

January 10, 2012 - April 7, 2012

The Lady and the Tramp

Images of Women in Austrian and German Art

October 11, 2011 - December 30, 2011

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

July 5, 2011 - September 30, 2011

Decadence & Decay

Max Beckmann, Otto Dix, George Grosz

April 12, 2011 - June 24, 2011

Self-Taught Painters in America 1800-1950

Revisiting the Tradition

January 11, 2011 - April 2, 2011

Marie-Louise Motesiczky

Paradise Lost & Found

October 12, 2010 - December 30, 2010

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

July 13, 2010 - October 1, 2010

Käthe Kollwitz

A Portrait of the Artist

April 13, 2010 - June 25, 2010

Seventy Years Grandma Moses

A Loan Exhibition Celebrating the 70th Anniversary of the Artist's "Discovery"

February 3, 2010 - April 3, 2010

Egon Schiele as Printmaker

A Loan Exhibition Celebrating the 70th Anniversary of the Galerie St. Etienne

November 3, 2009 - January 23, 2010

From Brücke To Bauhaus

The Meanings of Modernity in Germany, 1905-1933

March 31, 2009 - June 26, 2009

They Taught Themselves

American Self-Taught Painters Between the World Wars

January 9, 2009 - March 14, 2009

Elephants We Must Never Forget

New Paintings Drawings and Prints by Sue Coe

October 14, 2008 - December 20, 2008

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

June 24, 2008 - September 26, 2008

Hope or Menace?

Communism in Germany Between the World Wars

March 25, 2008 - June 13, 2008

Transforming Reality

Pattern and Design in Modern and Self-Taught Art

January 15, 2008 - March 8, 2008

Leonard Baskin

Proofs and Process

October 9, 2007 - January 5, 2008

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

June 5, 2007 - September 28, 2007

Who Paid the Piper?

The Art of Patronage in Fin-de-Siècle Vienna

March 8, 2007 - May 26, 2007

Fairy Tale, Myth and Fantasy

Approaches to Spirituality in Art

December 7, 2006 - February 3, 2007

More Than Coffee was Served

Café Culture in Fin-de-Siècle Vienna and Weimar Germany

September 19, 2006 - November 25, 2006

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

June 6, 2006 - September 8, 2006

Parallel Visions II

"Outsider" and "Insider" Art Today

April 5, 2006 - May 26, 2006


His First American Exhibtion

January 17, 2006 - March 18, 2006

Coming of Age

Egon Schiele and the Modernist Culture of Youth

November 15, 2005 - January 7, 2006

Sue Coe:

Sheep of Fools

September 20, 2005 - November 5, 2005

Recent Acquisitions

And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market

June 7, 2005 - September 9, 2005

Every Picture Tells a Story

The Narrative Impulse in Modern and Contemporary Art

April 5, 2005 - May 27, 2005

65th Anniversary Exhibition, Part II

Self-Taught Artists

January 18, 2005 - March 26, 2005

65th Anniversary Exhibition, Part I

Austrian and German Expressionism

October 28, 2004 - January 8, 2005

Sue Coe: Bully: Master of the Global Merry-Go-Round and Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

June 8, 2004 - October 16, 2004

Animals & Us

The Animal in Contemporary Art

April 1, 2004 - May 22, 2004

Henry Darger

Art and Myth

January 15, 2004 - March 20, 2004

Body and Soul

Expressionism and the Human Figure

October 7, 2003 - January 3, 2004

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

June 24, 2003 - September 12, 2003

In Search of the "Total Artwork"

Viennese Art and Design 1897–1932

April 8, 2003 - June 14, 2003

Russia's Self-Taught Artists

A New Perspective on the "Outsider"

January 14, 2003 - March 29, 2003

Käthe Kollwitz:

Master Printmaker

October 1, 2002 - January 4, 2003

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

June 25, 2002 - September 20, 2002

Workers of the World

Modern Images of Labor

April 2, 2002 - June 15, 2002

Grandma Moses

Reflections of America

January 15, 2002 - March 16, 2002

Gustav Klimt/Egon Schiele/Oskar Kokoscha

From Art Nouveau to Expressionism

November 23, 2001 - January 5, 2002

The "Black-and-White" Show

Expressionist Graphics in Austria & Germany

September 20, 2001 - November 10, 2001

Recent Acquisitions (And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

June 26, 2001 - September 7, 2001

Art with an Agenda

Politics, Persuasion, Illustration and Decoration

April 10, 2001 - June 16, 2001

"Our Beautiful and Tormented Austria!": Art Brut in the Land of Freud

January 18, 2001 - March 17, 2001

The Tragedy of War

November 16, 2000 - January 6, 2001

The Expressionist City

September 19, 2000 - November 4, 2000

Recent Acquisitions (And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

June 20, 2000 - September 8, 2000

From Façade to Psyche

Turn-of-the-Century Portraiture in Austria & Germany

March 28, 2000 - June 10, 2000

European Self-Taught Art

Brut or Naive?

January 18, 2000 - March 11, 2000

Saved From Europe

In Commemoration of the 60th Anniversary of the Galerie St. Etienne

November 6, 1999 - January 8, 2000

The Modern Child

(Images of Children in Twentieth-Century Art)

September 14, 1999 - November 6, 1999

Recent Acquisitions

(And a Look at Sixty Years of Art Dealing)

June 15, 1999 - September 3, 1999

Sue Coe: The Pit

The Tragical Tale of the Rise and Fall of a Vivisector

March 30, 1999 - June 5, 1999

Henry Darger and His Realms

January 14, 1999 - March 13, 1999

Becoming Käthe Kollwitz

An Artist and Her Influences

November 17, 1998 - December 31, 1998

George Grosz - Elfriede Lohse-Wächtler

Art & Gender in Weimar Germany

September 23, 1998 - November 11, 1998

Recent Acquisitions

(And Some Thoughts About Looted Art)

June 9, 1998 - September 11, 1998


Repression and Revolt in Modern Art

March 26, 1998 - May 30, 1998

Sacred & Profane

Michel Nedjar and Expressionist Primitivism

January 13, 1998 - March 14, 1998

Egon Schiele (1890-1918)

Master Draughtsman

November 18, 1997 - January 3, 1998

The New Objectivity

Realism in Weimar-Era Germany

September 16, 1997 - November 8, 1997

Recent Acquisitions

A Question of Quality

June 10, 1997 - September 5, 1997

Käthe Kollwitz - Lea Grundig

Two German Women & The Art of Protest

March 25, 1997 - May 31, 1997

That Way Madness Lies

Expressionism and the Art of Gugging

January 14, 1997 - March 15, 1997

The Viennese Line

Art and Design Circa 1900

November 18, 1996 - January 4, 1997

Emil Nolde - Christian Rohlfs

Two German Expressionist Masters

September 24, 1996 - November 9, 1996

Breaking All The Rules

Art in Transition

June 11, 1996 - September 6, 1996

Sue Coe's Ship of Fools

March 26, 1996 - May 24, 1996

New York Folk

Lawrence Lebduska, Abraham Levin, Isreal Litwak

January 16, 1996 - March 16, 1996

The Fractured Form

Expressionism and the Human Body

November 15, 1995 - January 6, 1996

From Left to Right

Social Realism in Germany and Russia, Circa 1919-1933

September 19, 1995 - November 4, 1995

Recent Acquisitions

June 20, 1995 - September 8, 1995

On the Brink 1900-2000

The Turning of Two Centuries

March 28, 1995 - May 26, 1995

Earl Cummingham - Grandma Moses

Visions of America

January 17, 1995 - March 18, 1995

Drawn to Text: Comix Artists as Book Illustrators

November 15, 1994 - January 7, 1995

Three Berlin Artists of the Weimar Era: Hannah Höch, Käthe Kollwitz, Jeanne Mam

September 13, 1994 - November 5, 1994

55th Anniversary Exhibition in Memory of Otto Kallir

June 7, 1994 - September 2, 1994

Sue Coe: We All Fall Down

March 29, 1994 - May 27, 1994

The Forgotten Folk Art of the 1940's

January 18, 1994 - March 19, 1994

Symbolism and the Austrian Avant Garde

Klimt, Schiele and their Contemporaries

November 16, 1993 - January 8, 1994

Art and Politics in Weimar Germany

September 14, 1993 - November 6, 1993

Recent Acquisitions

June 8, 1993 - September 3, 1993

The "Outsider" Question

Non-Academic Art from 1900 to the Present

March 23, 1993 - May 28, 1993

The Dance of Death

Images of Mortality in German Art

January 19, 1993 - March 13, 1993

Art Spiegelman

The Road to Maus

November 17, 1992 - January 9, 1993

Käthe Kollwitz

In Celebration of the 125th Anniversary of the Artist's Birth

September 15, 1992 - November 7, 1992

Naive Visions/Art Nouveau and Expressionism/Sue Coe: The Road to the White House

May 19, 1992 - September 4, 1992

Richard Gerstl/Oskar Kokoschka

March 17, 1992 - May 9, 1992

Scandal, Outrage, Censorship

Controversy in Modern Art

January 21, 1992 - March 7, 1992

Viennese Graphic Design

From Secession to Expressionism

November 19, 1991 - January 11, 1992

The Expressionist Figure

September 10, 1991 - November 9, 1991

Recent Acquisitions

Themes and Variations

May 14, 1991 - August 16, 1991

Sue Coe Retrospective

Political Document of a Decade

March 12, 1991 - May 5, 1991

Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, Oskar Kokoschka

Watercolors, drawings and prints

January 22, 1991 - March 2, 1991

Egon Schiele

November 13, 1990 - January 12, 1991

Lovis Corinth

A Retrospective

September 11, 1990 - November 3, 1990

Recent Acquisitions

June 12, 1990 - August 31, 1990

Max Klinger, Käthe Kollwitz, Alfred Kubin

A Study in Influences

March 27, 1990 - June 2, 1990

The Narrative in Art

January 23, 1990 - March 17, 1990

Grandma Moses

November 14, 1989 - January 13, 1990

Sue Coe

Porkopolis--Animals and Industry

September 19, 1989 - November 4, 1989

The Galerie St. Etienne

A History in Documents and Pictures

June 20, 1989 - September 8, 1989

Gustav Klimt

Paintings and Drawings

April 11, 1989 - June 10, 1989

Fifty Years Galerie St. Etienne: An Overview

February 14, 1989 - April 1, 1989

Folk Artists at Work

Morris Hirshfield, John Kane and Grandma Moses

November 15, 1988 - January 14, 1989

Recent Acquisitions and Works From the Collection

June 14, 1988 - September 16, 1988

From Art Nouveau to Expressionism

April 12, 1988 - May 27, 1988

Three Pre-Expressionists

Lovis Corinth Käthe Kollwitz Paula Modersohn-Becker

January 26, 1988 - March 12, 1988

Käthe Kollwitz

The Power of the Print

November 17, 1987 - January 16, 1988

Recent Acquisitions and Works From the Collection

April 7, 1987 - October 31, 1987

Folk Art of This Century

February 10, 1987 - March 28, 1987

Oskar Kokoschka and His Time

November 25, 1986 - January 31, 1987

Viennese Design and Wiener Werkstätte

September 23, 1986 - November 8, 1986

Gustav Klimt/Egon Schiele/Oskar Kokoschka

Watercolors, Drawings and Prints

May 27, 1986 - September 13, 1986

Expressionist Painters

March 25, 1986 - May 10, 1986

Käthe Kollwitz/Paula Modersohn-Becker

January 28, 1986 - March 15, 1986

The Art of Giving

December 3, 1985 - January 18, 1986

Expressionists on Paper

October 8, 1985 - November 23, 1985

European and American Landscapes

June 4, 1985 - September 13, 1985

Expressionist Printmaking

Aspects of its Genesis and Development

April 1, 1985 - May 24, 1985

Expressionist Masters

January 18, 1985 - March 23, 1985

Arnold Schoenberg's Vienna

November 13, 1984 - January 5, 1985

Grandma Moses and Selected Folk Paintings

September 25, 1984 - November 3, 1984

American Folk Art

People, Places and Things

June 12, 1984 - September 14, 1984

John Kane

Modern America's First Folk Painter

April 17, 1984 - May 25, 1984

Eugène Mihaesco

The Illustrator as Artist

February 28, 1984 - April 7, 1984

Early Expressionist Masters

January 17, 1984 - February 18, 1984

Paula Modersohn-Becker

Germany's Pioneer Modernist

November 15, 1983 - January 7, 1984

Gustav Klimt

Drawings and Selected Paintings

September 20, 1983 - November 5, 1983

Early and Late

Drawings, Paintings & Prints from Academicism to Expressionism

June 1, 1983 - September 2, 1983

Alfred Kubin

Visions From The Other Side

March 22, 1983 - May 7, 1983

20th Century Folk

The First Generation

January 18, 1983 - March 12, 1983

Grandma Moses

The Artist Behind the Myth

November 15, 1982 - January 8, 1983

Käthe Kollwitz

The Artist as Printmaker

September 28, 1982 - November 6, 1982

Aspects of Modernism

June 1, 1982 - September 3, 1982

The Human Perspective

Recent Acquisitions

March 16, 1982 - May 15, 1982

19th and 20th Century European and American Folk Art

January 19, 1982 - March 6, 1982

The Folk Art Tradition

Naïve Painting in Europe and the United States

November 17, 1981 - January 9, 1982

Austria's Expressionism

April 21, 1981 - May 30, 1981

Eugène Mihaesco

His First American One-Man Show

March 3, 1981 - April 11, 1981

Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele

November 12, 1980 - December 27, 1980

Summer Exhibition

June 17, 1980 - October 31, 1980

Kollwitz: The Drawing and The Print

May 1, 1980 - June 10, 1980

40th Anniversary Exhibition

November 13, 1979 - December 28, 1979

American Primitive Art

November 22, 1977

Käthe Kollwitz

December 1, 1976

Neue Galerie-Galerie St. Etienne

A Documentary Exhibition

May 1, 1976

Martin Pajeck

January 27, 1976

Georges Rouault and Frans Masereel

April 29, 1972

Branko Paradis

December 1, 1971

Käthe Kollwitz

February 3, 1971

Egon Schiele

The Graphic Work

October 19, 1970

Gustav Klimt

March 20, 1970

Friedrich Hundertwasser

May 6, 1969

Austrian Art of the 20th Century

March 21, 1969

Egon Schiele

Memorial Exhibition

October 31, 1968

Yugoslav Primitive Art

April 30, 1968

Alfred Kubin

January 30, 1968

Käthe Kollwitz

In the Cause of Humanity

October 23, 1967

Abraham Levin

September 26, 1967

Karl Stark

April 5, 1967

Gustav Klimt

February 4, 1967

The Wiener Werkstätte

November 16, 1966

Oskar Laske

October 25, 1965

Käthe Kollwitz

May 1, 1965

Egon Schiele

Watercolors and Drawings from American Collections

March 1, 1965

25th Anniversary Exhibition

Part II

November 21, 1964

25th Anniversary Exhibition

Part I

October 17, 1964

Mary Urban

June 9, 1964

Werner Berg, Jane Muus and Mura Dehn

May 5, 1964

Eugen Spiro

April 4, 1964

B. F. Dolbin

Drawings of an Epoch

March 3, 1964

Austrian Expressionists

January 6, 1964

Joseph Rifesser

December 3, 1963

Panorama of Yugoslav Primitive Art

October 21, 1963

Joe Henry

Watercolors of Vermont

May 1, 1963

French Impressionists

March 8, 1963

Grandma Moses

Memorial Exhibition

November 26, 1962

Group Show

October 15, 1962

Ernst Barlach

March 23, 1962

Martin Pajeck

February 24, 1962

Paintings by Expressionists

January 27, 1962

Käthe Kollwitz

November 11, 1961

Grandma Moses

September 7, 1961

My Friends

Fourth Biennial of Pictures by American School Children

May 27, 1961

Raimonds Staprans

April 17, 1961

Gustav Klimt, Egon Schiele, Oskar Kokoschka and Alfred Kubin

March 14, 1961

Marvin Meisels

January 23, 1961

Egon Schiele

November 15, 1960

My Life's History

Paintings by Grandma Moses

September 12, 1960

Watercolors and Drawings by Austrian Artists from the Dial Collection

May 2, 1960

Martin Pajeck

February 29, 1960

Eugen Spiro

February 6, 1960

Käthe Kollwitz

December 14, 1959

Josef Scharl

Last Paintings and Drawings

November 11, 1959

European and American Expressionists

September 22, 1959

Our Town

One Hundred Paintings by American School Children

May 23, 1959

Marvin Meisels and Martin Pajeck

May 1, 1959

Gustav Klimt

April 1, 1959

Käthe Kollwitz

January 12, 1959

Oskar Kokoschka

October 28, 1958

Village Life in Guatemala

Paintings by Andres Curuchich

June 3, 1958

Two Unknown American Expressionists

Paintings by Marvin Meisels and Martin Pajeck

April 28, 1958

Paula Modersohn-Becker

March 15, 1958

The Great Tradition in American Painting

American Primitive Art

January 20, 1958

Jules Lefranc and Dominique Lagru

Two French Primitives

November 18, 1957

Margret Bilger

October 22, 1957

The Four Seasons

One Hundred Paintings by American School Children

June 11, 1957

Grandma Moses

May 6, 1957

Alfred Kubin

April 3, 1957

Franz Lerch

March 2, 1957

Egon Schiele

January 21, 1957

Josef Scharl

Memorial Exhibition

November 17, 1956

Irma Rothstein

May 19, 1956

Käthe Kollwitz

April 16, 1956

A Tribute to Grandma Moses

November 28, 1955

As I See Myself

One Hundred Paintings by American School Children

May 20, 1955

Juan De'Prey

April 19, 1955

Erich Heckel

March 29, 1955

Freddy Homburger

March 2, 1955

Masters of the 19th Century

January 18, 1955

Oskar Kokoschka

November 29, 1954

Isabel Case Borgatta and Josef Scharl

October 12, 1954

James N. Rosenberg and Eugen Spiro

April 30, 1954

Per Krogh

April 2, 1954

Cuno Amiet

February 16, 1954

Eniar Jolin

January 14, 1954

Irma Rothstein

December 8, 1953

Josef Scharl

November 11, 1953

Grandma Moses

October 21, 1953 - October 24, 1953

Wilhelm Kaufmann

September 30, 1953

Lovis Corinth, Oskar Kokoschka and Egon Schiele

May 27, 1953

A Grandma Moses Album

Recent Paintings, 1950-1953

April 15, 1953

Streeter Blair

American Primitive

February 26, 1953

Paintings on Glass

Austrian Religious Folk Art of the 17th to 19th Centuries

December 4, 1952

Hasan Kaptan

Paintings of a Ten-Year-Old Turkish Painter

October 29, 1952

Margret Bilger

May 10, 1952

American Natural Painters

March 31, 1952

Ten Years of New York Concert Impressions by Eugen Spiro; Four New Paintings by

January 26, 1952


Watercolors of New York by a Chinese Artist

December 1, 1951

Käthe Kollwitz

October 25, 1951

Drawings and Watercolors by Austrian Children

May 21, 1951

Grandma Moses

Twenty-Five Masterpieces of Primitive Art

March 17, 1951

Roswitha Bitterlich

January 18, 1951

Oskar Laske

Watercolors of Vienna and the Salzkammergut

October 14, 1950

Tenth Anniversary Exhibition

Part II

May 11, 1950

Austrian Art of the 19th Century

From Wadlmüller to Klimt

April 1, 1950

Chiao Ssu-Tu

February 18, 1950

Anton Faistauer

January 1, 1950

Tenth Anniversary Exhibition

Part I

November 30, 1949

Autograph Exhibition

October 26, 1949

Gladys Wertheim Bachrach

May 24, 1949

Oskar Kokoschka

March 30, 1949

Eugen Spiro

February 19, 1949

Frans Masereel

January 13, 1949

Ten Years Grandma Moses

November 22, 1948

Käthe Kollwitz


October 18, 1948

American Primitives

June 3, 1948

Egon Schiele

Memorial Exhibition

April 5, 1948

Miriam Richman

February 7, 1948

Vally Wieselthier

Memorial Exhibition

January 10, 1948

Christmas Exhibition

December 4, 1947

Fritz von Unruh

November 10, 1947

Käthe Kollwitz

October 4, 1947

Grandma Moses

May 17, 1947

Lovis Corinth

April 16, 1947

Hugo Steiner-Prag

March 15, 1947

Mark Baum

January 11, 1947

Eugen Spiro

November 25, 1946

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec

May 17, 1946

Ladis W. Sabo

Paintings by a New Primitive Artist

April 8, 1946

Georges Rouault

The Graphic Work

February 26, 1946

Käthe Kollwitz

Memorial Exhibition

November 21, 1945

Fred E. Robertson

Paintings by an American Primitive

June 13, 1945

Max Liebermann

The Graphic Work

April 18, 1945

Vienna through Four Centuries

March 1, 1945

Eugen Spiro

January 20, 1945

Grandma Moses

New Paintings

December 5, 1944

Käthe Kollwitz

Part II

October 26, 1944

A Century of French Graphic Art

From Géricault to Picasso

September 28, 1944

Max Liebermann

Memorial Exhibition

June 9, 1944

Juan De'Prey

Paintings by a Self-Taught Artist from Puerto Rico

May 6, 1944

Abraham Levin

April 15, 1944

Lesser Ury

Memorial Exhibition

March 21, 1944

Grandma Moses

Paintings by the Senior of the American Primitives

February 9, 1944

Betty Lane

January 11, 1944

WaIt Disney Cavalcade

December 9, 1943

Käthe Kollwitz

Part I

November 3, 1943

Will Barnet

September 29, 1943

Lovis Corinth

May 26, 1943

Josephine Joy

Paintings by an American Primitive

May 3, 1943

Oskar Kokoschka

Aspects of His Art

March 31, 1943

Eugen Spiro

February 13, 1943

Seymour Lipton

January 18, 1943

Illuminated Gothic Woodcuts

Printed and Painted, 1477-1493

December 5, 1942

Abraham Levin

November 4, 1942

Walt Disney Originals

September 23, 1942

Documents which Relate History

Documents of Historical Importance and Landmarks of Human Development

June 10, 1942

Honoré Daumier

April 29, 1942

Bertha Trabich

Memorial Exhibition of a Russian-American Primitive

March 25, 1942

Alfred Kubin

Master of Drawing

December 4, 1941

Egon Schiele

November 7, 1941

Betty Lane

June 3, 1941

Flowers from Old Vienna

18th and Early 19th Century Flower Painting

May 7, 1941

Weavings by Navaho and Hopi Indians and Photos of Indians by Helen M. Post

January 29, 1941

Georg Merkel

November 7, 1940

What a Farm Wife Painted

Works by Mrs. Anna Mary Moses

October 9, 1940

Saved from Europe

Masterpieces of European Art

July 1, 1940

American Abstract Art

May 22, 1940

Franz Lerch

May 1, 1940

Wilhelm Thöny

April 3, 1940

French Masters of the 19th and 20th Centuries

February 29, 1940

H. W. Hannau

Metropolis, Photographic Studies of New York

February 2, 1940

Oskar Kokoschka

January 9, 1940

Austrian Masters

November 13, 1939


(And Some Thoughts on the Current Art Market)

June 24, 2008 - September 26, 2008


Basicevic, Ilija Bosilj

Baskin, Leonard

Corinth, Lovis

Dix, Otto

Feininger, Lyonel

Grosz, George

Heartfield, John

Hirshfield, Morris

Kirchner, Ernst Ludwig

Klimt, Gustav

Kollwitz, Käthe

Malsov, A.

Mammen, Jeanne

Modersohn-Becker, Paula

Moses, Anna Mary Robertson ("Grandma")

Nolde, Emil

Pechstein, Hermann Max

Schiele, Egon


As art prices have spiraled ever upward during the last several years, the art world has buzzed with talk of a "bubble." At each of the big semiannual auction sales, observers hold their breaths as though witnessing a death-defying high-wire act: Will prices hold up, or will they tumble, bringing down the entire art world? Yet if the twenty-first-century art market has become increasingly frothy, it has not emulated the art bubble of the 1980s, nor the much-derided recent housing bubble. As the Galerie St. Etienne has frequently noted in our mid-year state-of-the market reports, in the present boom the rising tide has not lifted all boats. Rather, money has tended to pool at the top, creating an enormous gap between the value of works that are perceived to be extraordinary and everything else. Bifurcation, not bubble, is the operative concept.


The current economic downturn and credit crisis have naturally exacerbated the art world's preexisting fears of impending doom. Nevertheless, it is difficult to predict how, when or if the crunch is going to impact the art market. On the one hand, art is a luxury readily dispensed with when times get tough. The present crisis is partly a crisis of faith, as irrational as the subprime lending binge that triggered it. With tight credit reducing the cash flow of some art world players, there is certainly a chance that the art market will suffer a parallel loss of confidence. On the other hand, today's top-tier collectors are thought to be so wealthy that they should be immune to any form of economic hardship. Art is notoriously illiquid, but it is sometimes perceived as a safe haven when other investment options falter. To the extent that the American art market has become globalized, the weak dollar is cushioning art prices in much the same fashion that it has sustained the value of Manhattan real estate. Rather than an across-the-board decline in art prices, what we are seeing so far is an ever-narrowing focus on the upper echelons of the market. In that exalted realm, values continue to rise, but down below, more and more artworks, artists and dealers are being left behind. Thus the auction houses have been able to proclaim continued financial success, even as disappointing sales results proliferate.


The tightening market reveals just how stratified the art world has become in the last decade or so. Auctioneers and dealers alike have felt compelled to focus the bulk of their energies on obtaining and selling top-end material. In the secondary market, less than stellar material is often relegated to the back burner. There is a palpable pecking order among art fairs: At the pinnacle are the two Basels and TEFAF Maastricht, featuring certified blue-chip masterpieces and a significant amount of secondary market material. Next come trend-setting fairs devoted exclusively to new art, most notably Frieze in London and New York's Armory Show. Swirling around these mega-events are a host of lesser fairs, hunting grounds for speculative collectors looking for the Next Big Thing. The galleries that populate the satellite fairs function like farm teams, cultivating young talent deemed unready for the majors. Artists who show promise will eventually be poached by bigger dealers, obviating the long-term relationships that traditionally existed between gallerists and "their" artists. Gone is the slow nurturance that once allowed talent to develop gradually, at its own pace. Like ballplayers, today's young artists may well find themselves washed-up by the time they hit their mid-thirties.


At the moment, it is all about marketing. Art stars have earned a place in the pop-culture pantheon alongside rock, film and sport stars. Granted, the chance of any one artist attaining such exalted status is exceedingly slim. The point is that until recently the category "art star" did not even exist. It is no coincidence that the most financially successful artists of the baby-boom generation have enthusiastically embraced the commercial realm, extending the trail blazed by Andy Warhol in the 1960s. Artists such as Jeff Koons and Damien Hirst are so savvy about their interactions with the art world that they have been accused of manipulating the market. However, it would probably be more accurate to say that the market is a primary subject of their art. Over the past year, they have vied with one another for the title of "most expensive living artist sold at auction," only both to be eclipsed this May by a relative old master, Lucien Freud. Koons, a one-time Wall Street commodities trader with a flair for self-promotion, has cultivated a concentrated support base of powerful dealers and collectors. His sumptuously crafted enlargements of kitsch icons, toys and tchotchkes have come to be recognized as a bankable global brand, the ultimate luxury products for super-wealthy consumers. Similarly, Hirst's much-publicized diamond-encrusted skull gaudily heralds the belief that art is the supreme luxury in a luxury-obsessed society. The skull's outrageous price (a reported $100,000,000) and sparkling surface (diamonds valued at $8,000,000, embedded in platinum) are undercut by its macabre form. Hirst, rumored to be the world's richest artist, may be a covert moralist after all, reminding us, with the skull and his even more gruesome animal carcasses, that earthly pleasure is fleeting.


These artists are not lone geniuses sequestered in isolated garrets, but entrepreneurs whose business activities make Warhol's "Factory" seem naively misnamed. Koons employs 90 artists and has pursued collaborations with Hugo Boss and a skateboard manufacturer. Hirst's company, Science Ltd., oversees huge studios in London and Gloucestershire and employs 120 people. Science Ltd. and its licensing arm, Other Criteria, aim low as well as high, marketing T-shirts and posters to those who cannot afford $100,000,000. Hirst recently launched a line of bejeweled jeans in cooperation with Levi Strauss. Perhaps no contemporary artist has explored commercial licensing more thoroughly than Takashi Murakami. Where Warhol and other Pop Artists appropriated icons from popular culture and imported them into the high-art realm, Murakami crafts his own iconic characters and exports them from gallery-sized canvases and sculptures to popularly priced trinkets. Since 2001, he has been producing handbag designs for Louis Vuitton. Murakami oversees a staff of around 100 artists, animators, writers and artisans who work out of studios in Tokyo and Long Island City, New York. It is a given that artists like Murakami, Hirst and Koons rarely touch their own work.


Because the above-named artists and others of their ilk are more concerned with conceiving than with fabricating works of art, they have been referred to as conceptualists, heirs not just to Warhol, but to Marcel Duchamp. However, Duchamp, a founder of the Dada movement, wanted to repudiate the bourgeois art market, and the conceptual artists of the 1970s tried to create art so evanescent or insubstantial that it could not possibly be sold. Whereas today's art stars wholeheartedly endorse the idea of art as a commodity, Duchamp and the conceptualists endeavored to remove art from the tainted commercial sphere. Opposition to commercialism was, in fact, a central tenet of the modernist enterprise, dating back to the early nineteenth century. Industrial capitalism was then sundering the aristocratic social order, with its fixed hierarchies and stable values, substituting a fluid, constantly changing system governed solely by market forces. Denouncing the new bourgeois class as money-grubbing philistines, the avant-garde deliberately and progressively distanced itself from the public arena. To preserve an aura of sanctity in a world permeated by the mass media and consumerism, artists focused on arcane aesthetic issues -- "art for art's sake," or what the critic Clement Greenberg called "the imitation of imitating." Rejecting as kitsch anything that was easily and viscerally comprehensible, the art world became the province of a self-styled elite versed in the necessary explanatory theories.


The avant-garde's innate elitism frequently clashed with its opposition to bourgeois capitalism, and as a result, the ideology of modernism is rife with contradictions and hypocrisy. To counter the rigid dictates of the nineteenth-century European academy, modernists assimilated a variety of non-academic influences, but non-academic creators were seldom granted full aesthetic or economic parity. From the collages of the Surrealists and Cubists to the photographs of Richard Prince, images that in their original form had been transparent and readily intelligible were transformed, through the alchemy of modernism, into something opaque and mysterious. While many modernists favored socialist egalitarianism and championed "low" art forms, they eschewed populist aesthetics. They created "political" art that was completely disengaged from the lives of ordinary people. Their anti-materialistic stance notwithstanding, modernists were not immune to the temptations of financial success, and in practice modernism's emphasis on revolutionary experimentation fed capitalism's voracious appetite for new ideas. Pablo Picasso, a registered member of the Communist Party, was also among modernism's wealthiest artists. As modernism became more and more entrenched, avant-garde artists found themselves in charge of academies no less rigid than those they had originally rejected.


It is not surprising that it eventually became impossible for artists to maintain the fiction that, operating on a higher spiritual plane, they could participate in the capitalist system and yet remain fundamentally outside it. What is surprising is that this illusion lasted for nearly two-hundred years before finally succumbing to the inexorable pressures of the market. Prior to the modern era, artists had always been willing servants to power, supporting the values imposed upon society by its dominant class. If we are appalled by the overt commercialism of today's art stars, we should recognize that their attitude, while aberrant from a modernist perspective, is a return to the historical norm. As the art world embraces the commercial world more emphatically, the boundaries between the two spheres become increasingly blurred. The painter Julian Schnabel also directs movies, designs interiors and has even dabbled in real estate development, while the Gap produced a line of artist's T-shirts in conjunction with the 2008 Whitney Biennial. The mass media have been chasing cutting-edge trends for so long that the general public is relatively comfortable with avant-garde aesthetics. The upside of a cash-rich art scene is to be found in costly, labor-intensive installations such as Christo's Gates and Olafur Eliasson's forthcoming East River waterfalls, crowd-pleasing spectacles that reach a public whose size and scope would have been unthinkable just a few decades ago.


If at one extreme the contemporary art scene seems to be drowning in the vulgarity of extreme wealth, at the other, art is more popular and accessible than it has ever been before. The modernist taboo against commercialism was directly connected to the taboo against content, and both were inherently undemocratic. Modernism often intentionally turned its back on the general public, walling itself off in a temple devoted to arcane aesthetics. With its increasingly sterile progression of subordinate "isms," modernism had artists marching in lockstep toward a preordained future. As modernism's ideological stranglehold has loosened, we have come to recognize that the twentieth-century art scene was far more multifaceted than formalist theorists would have given us to believe. The one-time focus on French and American innovations, born of World-War and Cold-War politics, has broadened to include developments--such as Dada, Expressionism, Constructivism and Futurism--across the European continent. Today's art world embraces a plethora of artistic traditions and styles. "Low" art and "high" art, Western and non-Western aesthetics truly are starting to come together, feeding off one another in a nonhierarchical, open-ended fashion. This diversity can impede judgments of quality, but that seems a small price to pay for the unprecedented creative latitude that artists now enjoy.


The art world is not and never was an isolated spiritual realm, but an artifact of the real world, driven, like all else, in part by politics and money. Present market circumstances reflect fundamental shifts in the global socio-economic environment, which is not likely to change any time soon. Rising income inequality and the concomitant winner-take-all mentality have disastrous social implications that far transcend the art scene. It will be interesting to see how artists, freed from the taboo against content, choose to address this imbalance. There are, after all, many artists who are not chasing after money, just as there are still passionate collectors not motivated by speculative interests and dealers who are doing their best to negotiate this treacherous passage with integrity. The art market will continue to have its ups and downs, and today's art stars will not necessarily remain on top. Art operates on a very long time line; only over the course of generations is it possible to discern lasting value. On that time line, artistic and monetary worth become one.



The Galerie St. Etienne has a special perspective on recent art-world developments, because we have historically championed modernism's underdogs. Austrian and German Expressionism, the gallery's main area of expertise, was once viewed as a minor artistic movement, a humanist island in modernism's formalist sea. Self-taught art was an influential source for modernist giants such as Picasso, but not something to be taken seriously in its own right. We took it seriously. Grandma Moses was ostracized by the mainstream art world due to her immense popularity and because of commercial licenses that now pale in comparison to museums' routine merchandising programs. The gallery's founder, Otto Kallir, was an Austrian refugee who believed in the American dream. He did not see anything wrong with an art by the people or for the people, and he believed that popular art could be as valid as high art. Among his numerous and eclectic tastes was a passion for Walt Disney. The Galerie St. Etienne has also provided a hospitable forum for activist artists like Käthe Kollwitz and Sue Coe. A commitment to meaningful content links all the gallery's seemingly disparate interests.


Our summer exhibition, as usual, is a potpourri of recent acquisitions and highlights of the preceding season. While the booming art scene has somewhat diminished the availability of top-quality artworks, rising prices also lure treasures onto the market. Perhaps because auctions have become increasingly unpredictable, the Galerie St Etienne was fortunate to secure a number of major new works this summer. Among the highlights is an exceptionally strong grouping by Egon Schiele, including a stunning 1911 gouache, Female Nude, depicting the artist's unidentified girlfriend, and a poignant pencil drawing, dating to around 1915, of his bride Edith. The Schieles are complemented by Ernst Ludwig Kirchner's pensive portrait of his companion Erna Schilling, done while the artist was recuperating from trauma suffered during World War I. Two seminal early watercolors by Lyonel Feininger, a major Paris-period ink drawing by Max Beckmann, a vibrant portrait by Emile Nolde and two extremely rare lithographs by Max Pechstein also number among the gallery's Expressionist offerings. The German underclass and the socio-economic extremes of the Weimar era are represented in a diverse selection of works by Otto Dix, George Grosz and Käthe Kollwitz. Jeanne Mammen's watercolor of a Berlin dance hall is one of the last works of its kind in private hands.


The Galerie St. Etienne's principal exhibition this spring examined Communism in Germany during the 1920s -- focusing, as is our wont, on the interplay between art and politics at a time of economic and social upheaval. Our summer exhibition includes a selection of posters from that popular show, as well as a room devoted to the work of Leonard Baskin, an artist similarly committed to addressing human injustice. Last fall, the Galerie St. Etienne assumed representation of the Baskin estate, and we look forward to a continuing involvement with this multifaceted artist. Our summer offerings include four monumental watercolors from Baskin's series "Angels to the Jews," as well as several works on the Medea theme, exemplifying the artist's lifelong search for spiritual truths in what he perceived as a godless world. The gallery's third exhibition of the 2007-08 season explored the use of pattern by self-taught and trained artists. In the self-taught category, our summer show includes works by Ilija Bosilj-Basicevic, Morris Hirshfield and Grandma Moses.


Checklist entries include catalogue raisonné or inventory numbers, where applicable. Unless otherwise indicated, image dimensions are given for the prints and full dimensions for all other works, including the posters.