Open 11–18 today

The Chancellor's Art

The collection of Helmut and Loki Schmidt
4 October 2020 – 14 March 2021


Helmut Schmidt valued the arts both as a statesman and in private. Henry Moore’s Large Two Forms in front of the chancellery in Bonn was an acknowledgement of the importance of art, as was his visit to Barlach’s Hoverer in Güstrow Collegiate Church during his state visit to the GDR in 1981. Admiration for Barlach often brought the chancellor and his wife, Loki, to the Ernst Barlach Haus, and we are now the first museum to present the private collection of this celebrated couple.

The exhibition presents around 150 paintings, sculptures and craft objects – Hanseatic and international, major works and minor treasures. It centres on Ernst Barlach, Emil Nolde and the Worpswede artists’ colony. 

The exhibits are supplemented by photographs that document the art-political activities of the West German Chancellor and the long-standing ties of both Schmidts to the Ernst Barlach Haus and its collection. And so the presentation provides a stimulating insight into an aesthetically minded marriage, and appropriately concludes the Barlach anniversary year of 2020.

The Chancellor’s Art has been jointly organised with the Helmut and Loki Schmidt and Federal Chancellor Helmut Schmidt Foundations. Its accompanying book is published by Dölling und Galitz Verlag (216 pages with around 200 colour plates, German, hardcover, €34).

The Chancellor's Art shows works by Ernst Barlach, Rolf Böhlig, Marga Böhmer, Paul Bollmann, Olga Bontjes van Beek, Gudrun Brüne-Heisig, Marc Chagall, Jean Cocteau, Salvador Dalí, Otto Dix, Ernst Eitner, Hans am Ende, Albert Feser, Rainer Fetting, Klaus Fußmann, August Gaul, Francisco de Goya, August Haake, Erich Heckel, Bernhard Heisig, Thomas Herbst, Hermann Hesse, Rudolf Höckner, Otto Illies, Horst Janssen, Jean-Paul Kayser, Oskar Kokoschka, Käthe Kollwitz, Alfred Kubin, Marianne Lüdicke, August Macke, Eva de Maizière, Albert Marquet, Joan Miro, Otto Modersohn, Paula Modersohn-Becker, Henry Moore, Edvard Munch, Emil Nolde, Fritz Overbeck, Lilli Palmer, Max Pechstein, Pablo Picasso, Maria Pirwitz, Hugo Schmidt, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, Adolf Wriggers and Heinrich Zille.

In cooperation with