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Stella Rollig in conversation with Birgit Schwarz

Sunday, 6 December 2009

In her new book Geniewahn. Hitler und die Kunst, the art historian Birgit Schwarz develops a fascinating thesis: Adolf Hitler's political madness, his hypertrophic self-assessment, his phantasm of omnipotence are closely linked with his self-understanding as an artist. The failed career as an artist had no adverse effect on this self-image, but on the contrary. Enthralled by the belief in genius from the late 19th century, Hitler also acted as a politician with an "over-heated artist-ego".
Birgit Schwarz's arguments are based on her research findings – Hitler was obsessed by art to the end. The thesis is also a painful one. Art and its misuse, Hitler's love of art led straight into the heart of evil.

1984 PhD in Art History from the Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz; 1985/1986 internship at the Staatlichen Kunsthalle Karlsruhe; 1987–1989 residence in Rome; from 1990 work as freelance art historian and curator in Freiburg, Trier and Vienna: numerous publications on painting and glass painting in the 20th century, on the "Führer Museum Linz", and on Hitler's self-image as artist, patron and art collector.

sundays at 11

The LENTOS features sundays at 11, a series of talks, for which the LENTOS invites well-known figures from the world of art and culture. With LENTOS’s artistic director, Hemma Schmutz, in the chair, they discuss their activities and experiences in and with the world of art. Not only do audiences get a chance to follow the discussion at close quarters, they are also invited to join in; in fact, contributions from the floor have become an indispensable part of the format. Before the Sunday morning talk an expanded Viennese breakfast is served as an additional feature (which you are of course free to skip if you want to).

Click here for our previous guest list

An expanded Viennes breakfast is served from 10 a.m.; the beginning of the conversation is scheduled for 11 p.m.
Please register by Thursday before the talk under T +43 732 7070 3601 or

Lecture and breakfast € 14,-
Lecture only € 4,-

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Photo: © maschekS.