Nieuwsbrief
Design in Boijmans Autumn 2010
November 2010

Johan Thorn Prikker – beyond Art Nouveau

Johan Thorn Prikker was a rebel, a moralist and a hard worker. That makes his multifaceted oeuvre surprising. It consists of paintings, drawings, prints, textiles, furniture, monumental wall paintings, mosaics and stained-glass windows.

The Game of Life (1901-1902). Wall painting in the hall and staircase of the villa De Zeemeeuw (The Seagull), Scheveningen. Sgraffito, intarsia and a secco. Approx. 10 x 4 metres. Executed in collaboration with Johan Altorf
The Game of Life (1901-1902). Wall painting in the hall and staircase of the villa De Zeemeeuw (The Seagull), Scheveningen. Sgraffito, intarsia and a secco. Approx. 10 x 4 metres. Executed in collaboration with Johan Altorf

In the Netherlands Thorn Prikker is known as one of the most interesting Symbolist painters, with 'The Bride' as one of his best works. In Germany, where he lived after 1904, he is known as a designer of stained glass windows and spectacular mosaics. His celebrated design The Harbour Industry (1918), intended for the City Hall in Rotterdam, dates from this later period. The acquisition of this large canvas in 1922 marked Museum Boijmans’ beginnings as a museum of modern art.
The exhibition Johan Thorn Prikker – Beyond Art Nouveau follows the artist through the various cities where he lived and the changes in his work. It shows his continuous quest for an idiom and a suitable technique to visualise his ideals. Johan Thorn Prikker saw himself as an ‘art worker’ serving society. He wished to present his ideals through his work in the best and most beautiful manner.

Beyond Art Nouveau is a partnership with Museum Kunst Palast in Düsseldorf, where the exhibition will be shown in the spring of 2011. The exhibition has been curated by the Thorn Prikker expert, Christiane Heiser, and is accompanied by a richly illustrated catalogue with essays by twelve specialists from the Netherlands, Germany and Canada. The catalogue is a co-production with Museum Kunst Palast and is available in Dutch and German.

A series of workshops and lectures will be organised during the exhibition. For more information visit our website: www.boijmans.nl. A film about Johan Thorn Prikker will be posted on the museum’s online video channel at the end of November: arttube.boijmans.nl.

The exhibition has been organised in partnership with BankGiro Loterijmuseum kunst palast  in Düsseldorf, SNS REAAL Fonds, K.F. Hein Fonds, Stichting Elise Mathilde Fonds, Stichting Bevordering van Volkskracht and is part of the official programme of Holland Art Cities 2010-2011.

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