The rising of modern art and its breakthrough is closely affiliated with the history of the German Artists’ Association. It was the first cross-regional merger with the intension to attract more attention and to reach a wide audience with its exhibitions, which took place from 1904 on, every year in another German city. In 1936 the exhibition in Hamburg was closed by the Nazis and the Association was forbidden. Almost every artist of distinction during the first three decades of the twentieth century was a member of the Association, which was considered a platform where one could discuss and develop artistic ideas, without constant state interference.
After its new foundation in 1950, the interrupted tradition was continued: the annual exhibitions, housed in the most prestigious exhibition halls, presented cross-sections of the contemporary art from the artists perspectives.
The posters of these exhibitions reflect in a very impressive way the artistic, creative and social trends and contemporary historical issues. Only few posters of the time before the closure in 1936 could be saved in the archive of the German Artists’ Association. Among them is the one created by Edwin Scharff for the exhibition of 1929 in Cologne, depicting »Three men in a boot« - until today it is the signet of the Association.
Artists (selection): Karl Hartung (1955), Gerhard Hoehme (1960), Emil Schumacher (1963), Otto Piene (1972), Anton Stankowski (1978), Rupprecht Geiger (1981), Walter Stöhrer (1982), Fred Thieler (1990), Thomas Huber (1998)