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Cornelia Gurlitt & Anton Kolig
A Journey of Hearts

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  • Anton Kolig, The Lament, 1920

Cornelia Gurlitt (1890 – 1919), sister of Hitler’s art dealer” Hildebrand Gurlitt, was an equally talented and ambitious graphic artist of German Expressionism. The young artist was not destined to live to see her brother’s rise to the highest echelons of National Socialist art bureaucracy. In 1919, at the age of 29, she committed suicide. 


In Anton Kolig’s (1886 – 1950) official biography, no mention is made of Cornelia Gurlitt, until now. He presented his Erstes Selbstbildnis” (First Self-Portrait) of 1915 to his faithful girlfriend and dedicated one of his expressive major works, Die Klage” (The Lament) to her. Little is known about the relationship between the two artists*, who were bound by a kindred spirit. In 1919, Kolig embarked on the painting Frau mit Fächer” (Woman with Fan), which he was to keep by his side for the rest of his life, as a debt of gratitude to Cornelia and in honour of her memory. For the first time, long-obscured artworks by Cornelia Gurlitt and early works by Anton Kolig are brought into dialogue.

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