ENTARTETE KUNST – EINE AUSSTELLUNG DER NSDAP, Munich, 1937

Artists: Exhibiting more than 650 works of art, this exhibition included, amongst many others Alexander Archipenko, Willi Baumeister, Max Beckmann, Heinrich Campendonk, Marc Chagall, Otto Dix, Max Ernst, Lyonel Feininger, Ludwig Gies, George Grosz, Erich Heckel, Vasily Kandinsky, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Paul Klee, Oskar Kokoschka, Wilhelm Lehmbruck, Franz Marc, Jean Metzinger, Paula Modersohn-Becker, László Moholy-Nagy, Emil Nolde, Max Pechstein, Oskar Schlemmer, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, Max Schulze-Sölde, Kurt Schwitters

Opening: July 19, 1937, Hofgarten-Arkaden, Munich

Duration: July 19 November 30, 1937

Dimensions: 20 x 13.4 cm

Further Information: Under the title Entartete Kunst (Degenerate Art Exhibition) the national-socialist propaganda exhibition was organized by Adolf Ziegler and the NSDAP. The exhibition showed 650 works by over 120 contemporary outstanding artists of that time, who were systematically persecuted by the regime. Until today the whereabouts of some of the confiscated works remain unclear. The NSDAP used slogans and labels next to the exhibited works, which were typical for the Nazi rhetoric in order to discriminate, undermine, and outlaw artists in the context of the antisemitic racial ideology introduced by the Nazi regime.

Initiated by the Reich Minister of Propaganda Joseph Goebbels, the exhibition – accompanied by speeches of the Nazi party leaders – toured to Berlin, Leipzig, Düsseldorf, Hamburg, Frankfurt am Main, Vienna, Salzburg, Stettin and Halle.

Further Links:  The Institute for Art History at the Freie Universität Berlin initiated an on-going research project about Entartete Kunst in 2003, which develops a database for all the stolen art works. You can access the database here: emuseum.campus.fu-berlin.de

Images: Images of the invitation and all other archival documents shown on this page are part of the online collection of Archiv der Avantgarden, Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden.

Kurt SchwittersLászló Moholy-NagyMax ErnstOskar SchlemmerPaul KleeVasily Kandinsky


The exhibition was accompanied by a catalogue, using strong antisemitic and fascist language and a very aggresive rhetoric, to influence the readers’ and viewers’ perception of the work. A couple of pages from the “guide” can be seen below.


Photographs of “Das Haus der Kunst”outside and inside in Berlin on February 26, 1938, during the opening of the exhibition Entartete Kunst. The three art works visible in the photograph are by Friedrich Eberz, Emil Nolde, Ludwig Gies (f.l.t.r.). Photograph by Dr. Alfred Hentzen