The Collection of the Kirchner Museum Davos
Boasting a collection that is singular in the world, containing major works from the time of the Brücke, the war years 1915 to 1918 and the Swiss period, as well as an extensive documentary archive on the artist’s life and work, and a library on expressionism, the Kirchner Museum Davos is an important center for research and exhibitions related to classical modernism.
The collection is owned by the Ernst Ludwig Kirchner Foundation Davos. Thanks to generous gifts of Rosemarie and Roman Norbert Ketterer and the Benvenuta Family Foundation in 1992, and previous donations from municipal and private collections, it keeps an extensive collection of work by Ernst Ludwig Kirchner. Due to further important private donations after 1993, the Kirchner Museum now holds a representative selection of works from all the artist’s creative periods and main themes.
The Kirchner collection encompasses around 40 paintings, seven sculptures—including the bed Kirchner carved for Erna Schilling—over 700 drawings and watercolors, more than 300 woodcuts, etchings, and lithographs, 160 sketchbooks (with over 9000 drawings), more than 1500 glass/cellulose negatives and vintage prints, as well as about 20 textile works embroidered or woven from Kirchner’s designs.
The collection is supplemented by donations of work by other artists. Today the museum holds over 50 works by the German artist Fritz Winter (gift of Gottfried und Marti-Keller-Huber, 1997; gift of Ilse Winternheimer-Zölffel, 2000); 40 works by Kirchner’s student Christian Anton Laely; all extant woodblocks and printing plates of Basel artist Albert Müller (gift of the estate of Albert Müller, 1999); and important works by colleagues and contemporaries of Kirchner, such as Erich Heckel, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, Otto Mueller, Alexej Jawlensky, Wassily Kandinsky, Franz Marc, Wilhelm Lehmbruck, Georg Kolbe, Lyonel Feininger, and Max Beckmann, which the museum has been able to present since 2000 and 2011, thanks to the “Rosemarie and Konrad Baumgart-Möller Foundation in Memory of Ferdinand Möller, Berlin,” and the Rosemarie Ketterer Foundation, respectively.
In 2019, the Kirchner Museum Davos acquired the portrait sculpture Ernst Ludwig Kirchner 6.5.1880 by renowned Graubünden artist Not Vital.