a visit to the Gabriele Münter Haus in Murnau + a bit of art historical drama

The painter Gabriele Münter spent the summer months with artist Wassily Kandinsky from 1909-1914 in this historic house in Murnau, where they welcomed other artists, composers, collectors, and intellectuals. I've been wanting to visit for quite a while, as it is only a one hour drive from Munich, and we finally made a spontaneous day trip last weekend.

I took this photo with a lovely view of the town of Murnau from inside the house. 

The rooms are preserved with many of the original furnishings,

and there are several paintings of Münter's intimate domestic scenes hanging in the rooms where they were created.

Notice how the lamp in the living room

becomes an important element in one of Münter's works.

This kitchen cupboard was painted by Kandinsky

as was the fanciful staircase.


The relationship between Münter and Kandinsky ended rather tragically, however. When WWI broke out in 1914, they first fled to Switzerland, and then onto Scandinavia. Kandinsky left for Moscow, and  abruptly broke off all contact with Münter. She found out later it was because had fallen in love and married a Russian woman.

After the war ended, Münter returned to Germany very depressed and unable to paint. Long visits to Berlin and Paris helped revive her spirits, and eventually she returned to Murnau with a new partner, an art historian who supported her career. Münter's and Kandinsky's works were banned under the Nazi dictatorship, and she was forced to hide their artwork during WWII. 

Later in life, Münter was celebrated for her artistic accomplishments. Upon her death, she left a large collection of her own paintings, as well as Kandinsky's and several other well-known artists from Der Blaue Reiter movement to the Lenbachhaus Museum in Munich, where they can now be seen in a permanent collection. 


Have you seen any inspiring art lately? Interesting exhibitions - historical or contemporary?

Hope you are having a good week!