09 May – 19 Jul 2014
The works of these four artists, Lyonel Feininger, Alexej Jawlensky, Wassily Kandinsky and Paul Klee, have regularly been exhibited at Galerie Thomas since it was founded 50 years ago - but never in one exhibition. To celebrate our anniversary, we are filling this gap.
Everyone has heard of the "Blue Rider", a group of artists founded in 1911 by Wassily Kandinsky and Franz Marc. Thirteen years later, Kandinsky became part of "The Blue Four", which brought together four outstanding artists, who knew and respected each other.
The initiator was Emmy "Galka" Scheyer, an artist herself, daughter of a wealthy manufacturer of canned goods, who had become acquainted with Alexej Jawlensky in 1915 during his exile in Switzerland. Through him, she met Lyonel Feininger, a US citizen with German roots, Paul Klee and Kandinsky. Scheyer appreciated and loved their art, which was already well known in Europe. She wanted to spread their fame to the United States.
On March 31, 1924, the four artists signed a contract with Scheyer, on May 8 she boarded a ship. She organised the first exhibition of "The Blue Four" on American soil in February 1925 at the Daniel Gallery in New York. The first museum exhibition was presented at the Oakland Museum in autumn of the same year.
For two decades, Scheyer worked for the four artists she admired, selling works to Hollywood actors and directors, serious collectors like Walter Conrad Arensberg or a yet unknown young composer, John Cage.