Käthe Kollwitz Museum Köln
Neumarkt 18-24 / Neumarkt Passage
+49 (0)221 227 2899
+49 (0)221 227 2602
Tue - Sun
11 am – 6 pm
First Thu each month
11 am – 8 pm
From 12 December 2022 until probably August 2023 the museum will be closed due to necessary constructional and conceptual changes, in particular an energetic renovation of the current building equipment.
Line etching, drypoint, aquatint and burnisher, Kn 45 IV
Probably inspired by the cycles of her great role model Max Klinger that she saw during her studies in Munich, Käthe Kollwitz explored again and again gender related issues at the beginning of artistic career. In these works she focussed, just like Klinger in »A Life« and »A Love«, above all on the situation of women.Unlike Klinger, however, Käthe Kollwitz based her representation of the difficult situation of a girl who has fallen on hard times as a result her pregnancy on a literary model – the figure of Gretchen from Goethe’s Faust. She created a number of impressive drawings and prints on this theme.The etching »Gretchen« shows the heavily pregnant girl on a bridge looking down at the vision of a figure – Death – crouching on the ground and tenderly hugging an infant. What Gretchen ›sees‹ is the only way that she thinks will lead her out of her predicament – to entrust her unborn child to Death.
Käthe Kollwitz, At the Church Wall, 1893, line etching, drypoint and brush etching, Kn 17 III
Käthe Kollwitz, A Woman’s Plight (Martyrdom of a Woman), c 1889, pen, brush and ink, washed, on laid paper, NT (17a)