Berlin’s Lotte Laserstein (1898-1993) was one of the most sensitive portrait painters of the early Modernist period when tradition vied with innovation. By the time she was 30, she was a well-known and successful artist. Her career was brutally ended in 1933.
Berlin’s public museum of modern art, photography and architecture shows 58 works – 48 paintings and 9 drawings – by Laserstein along with documents reflecting her professional heyday in Berlin and her exile in Sweden. The Berlinische Galerie will take over the exhibition Face to Face organised by the Städel Museum in Frankfurt, running there until 17 March. In Berlin, these works by Laserstein will be joined by portraits, landscapes, late works and also other paintings from her artistic environment in the 1920/30s.
Lotte Laserstein had a talent for combining two universes. She played with quotes from art history but also with hallmarks of Post-Impressionism – its flat forms and its brushwork. Laserstein was a gentle, empathetic chronicler of the 1920s and 1930s: she painted women and men of the new era and of every class as naturally as she found them. She used pictorial means to defy contemporary social norms about gender roles.
An exhibition of the Städel Museum, Frankfurt am Main, in collaboration with the Berlinische Galerie.all images © the gallery and the artist(s)