Home Arts how Lotte Laserstein’s paint box saved her during Nazi-era exile

how Lotte Laserstein’s paint box saved her during Nazi-era exile

by godlove4241
0 comment

In 1937, a gallery in Stockholm invited Lotte Laserstein (1898-1993) to bring some of her best paintings for an exhibition. The offer turned out to be a lifesaver. The German-born artist was already at the height of her career in Berlin, with critics praising her paintings of contemporary subjects (like the liberated modern woman) in a traditional realist style. But when the Nazis came to power, she was ousted as an artist of Jewish descent. Going to Sweden – and staying there unexpectedly when hostilities escalated during her stay – became her ticket to survival, which also allowed her to continue painting.

Today, a retrospective at the Moderna Museet in Malmö reinforces his legacy in his adopted home of 56 years. Laserstein’s work has seen a wave of rediscoveries in recent years, but her recent solo exhibition – which was shown in Berlin, Frankfurt and Kiel between 2018 and 2020 – featured only the first works she produced. in Germany. Lotte Laserstein: A Divided Lifeon the other hand, gives equal weight to the later works she created in Sweden and constitutes the largest institutional exhibition of her work to date, with approximately 85 paintings.

by Laserstein Evening talk (1948) © Lotte Laserstein Archives Krausse

In exile, Laserstein created piercing self-portraits where she often appears androgynous, nudes of women from a distinctly feminine perspective, portraits of other immigrants, and landscapes. His works are characterized by immobility, tinged with sober and earthy colors. Some of his very first commissions were in Malmö, just after that 1937 gallery exhibition, including a portrait of Erik Trolle (the valet of King Gustaf of Sweden).

Although Laserstein was able to support herself in Sweden as an artist, she did not receive much public recognition until the late 1970s. “My life was cut into two almost equal sized pieces : childhood, youth, education, my first freelance job and leaving Germany, then a hard new start in Sweden”, wrote Laserstein in the 1980s. “If I had not had my own reality in my paint box, this little briefcase that took me from Skåne via Stockholm to Jämtland, I couldn’t have endured those years when everything was taken from me: family, friends and home. I recovered part of it thanks to “my only reality”.

Lotte Laserstein: A Divided Life, Moderna Museet, Malmö, 6 May-1 October; Moderna Museet, Stockholm, November 11-
April 14, 2024

You may also like

Leave a Comment

@2022 – All Right Reserved. Designed and Developed by artworlddaily