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[[underlined]] The American Federation of Arts [[/underlined]] has organized the first post-war traveling exhibition from Germany entitled, "CONTEMPORARY BERLIN ARTISTS." The following article appeared in the March 26, 1951 issue of TIME Magazine.

[[image - Blind City painting by Troekes]]
[[image - Houses painting by Hofer's]]
[[image credit]] The American Federation of Arts [[/image credit]]

The prostituted have all but disappeared; the persecuted are building on the ruins.

Painted in Berlin

One of the most interesting shows in the U.S. last week was a sleeper, a little heralded exhibition of pictures by 24 Berlin artists. Sponsored by the American Federation of Arts, the show opened in Louisville; it will tour the country, stopping mostly in smaller cities, e.g., Iowa City, San Jose, Calif. and Bloomfield Hills, Mich.  Some big-city museums which did not hear of the show till it arrived are dickering for it too.

The exhibition gives U.S. gallerygoers their first good postwar look at what battered Berlin has been producing in the way of art.  The painters whom the Nazis prostituted have all by disappeared; those who were persecuted are building on the ruins.  Among them are three top-flight representatives of the three main trends in modern art:  expressionism, surrealism and abstractionism.

Expressionist Karl Hofer, 73, is dean of Berlin painters, head of a free West Berlin art school.  His Houses is as good as anything in the show, and gloomier than all the rest.  Its figures, half flesh and half masonry, seem to be waiting rigid in the dark for an inevitable bomb.  Hofer knows what bombs can do.  Forbidden by the Nazis to exhibit his work, he kept on painting in Berlin when war came, saw his studio and some 300 pictures destroyed in an air raid.  After the war, he set about painting the same pictures over again.  Human beings, most sorrowful, remain the basic element in his art, but today Hofer flattens and distorts them more rigorously than ever.

Surrealist Heinz Troekes, 37, is now in Paris on a grant from the French government.  His Blind City looks like a nightmare view of Berlin, and though it lacks the comparison evident in Hofer's Houses, it is equally haunting.  When he finishes a painting, Troekes says, he is "always quite startled and in a new world. In that world everything is quite natural for me.  If it's not natural, the picture goes into the wastebasket." 

Abstractionist Hans Jaenisch, 43, is considered one of Germany's most "promising" artists.  Like Hofer, he lost most of his lifework to allied bombs, but Jaenisch was almost pleased when he returned from a Texas P.W. camp and found his painting gone.  "It left me free to begin all over again."  Jaenisch's Air Lift is one of 20 paintings he did on the same theme.  The first few in the series reflect his early vision of the planes as "terrifying animals moving through the air.  On these fearful creatures our whole life hung."  By the time he did the Air Lift on exhibition, Jaenisch had lost his fear.

TIME, MARCH 26, 1951 
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