Expressionism (lat. expressio = expression) is an artistic style of the 20th century. Expressionism understood itself as a reaction against impressionism, realism and naturalism. In contrast to the fleeting perception of the impressionists and the accurate nature observation of the realists and naturalists, the expressionists aspired more to artistic expression. The shapes became simpler and the colors used were purer – the subjective message of the artist was now placed in the foreground. Accordingly, two centers of expressionism were formed: in Dresden, "Die Brücke" [The Bridge] was formed in 1905, whose representatives Heckel, Kirchner, Schmidt- Rottluff, Pechstein, Nolde and Müller emphasized the opposition of contrast-rich color surfaces; the second expressionist group was established in Munich in 1911 by Kandinsky and Marc under the name "Der Blaue Reiter" [The Blue Rider]. Other members, such as Münter, Klee, Kubin, Macke, Jawlensky, and Feininger, followed. These artists were mostly concerned with spiritual expression, and they also followed the principle of syaesthesia. Expressionist artists had in common a geometrization of shapes, and colors were accorded their own legitimacy. In addition, the expressionists rediscovered woodcuts for themselves. The brittle material required broad, angular handling, and this was well suited to expressionism. Expressionism was a German movement, but it was also superimposed with the French principles of fauvism as well as principles of Italian futurism. In this way, the German translation – "der Sturm" [the storm] – of the "Futurist manifesto" of the Italian poet Filippo Tommaso Marinetti became an important element of German expressionism.
Important expressionist artists are:
Max Beckmann, Peter August Böckstiegel, Heinrich Campendonk, Otto Dix, Lyonel Feininger, George Grosz, Erich Heckel, Alexej von Jawlensky, Wassily Kandinsky, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Oskar Kokoschka, August Macke, Franz Marc, Paula Modersohn-Becker, Otto Mueller, Edvard Munch, Gabriele Münter, Emil Nolde, Max Pechstein, Christian Rohlfs, Egon Schiele, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, Marianne von Werefkin.
Related artists: Ackermann, Max | Ahlers-Hestermann, Friedrich | Balwé, Arnold | Bargheer, Eduard | Barlach, Ernst | Baumeister, Willi | Bechtejeff, Vladimir Georgiewitsch von | Beckmann, Max | Birkle, Albert | Bossi, Erma | Braque, Georges | Breitwieser, Georg | Buffet, Bernard | Böckstiegel, Peter August | Campendonk, Heinrich | Caspar-Filser, Maria | Cassel, Pol (Paul Ernst Karl) | Cézanne, Paul | Corinth, Lovis | Davringhausen, Heinrich Maria | Dexel, Walter | Dix, Otto | Ehmsen, Heinrich | Ehrhardt, Curt | Erbslöh, Adolf | Feininger, Lyonel | Felixmüller, Conrad | Fleischmann, Adolf Richard | Fronius, Hans | Gauguin, Paul | Geiger, Willi | Geitlinger, Ernst | Gilles, Werner | Gotsch, Friedrich Karl | Grosz, George | Gutfreund, Otto | Hartung, Karl | Hassebrauk, Ernst | Hausmann, Raoul | Heckel, Erich | Heckendorf, Franz | Henninger, Manfred | Herbin, Auguste | Hofer, Karl | Hubbuch, Karl | Höch, Hannah | Hölzel, Adolf | Jacob, Walter | Jawlensky, Andreas | Kandinsky, Wassily | Kaus, Max | Kerkovius, Ida | Kirchner, Ernst Ludwig | Klee, Paul | Klein, Cesar | Kleinschmidt, Paul | Klimsch, Fritz | Klimt, Gustav | Kokoschka, Oskar | Kolbe, Georg | Kollwitz, Käthe | Krauskopf, Bruno | Kubin, Alfred | Lanskoy, André | Lehmbruck, Wilhelm | Levy, Rudolf | Liebermann, Max | Lohse-Wächtler, Elfriede | Macke, August | Marc, Franz | Marcks, Gerhard | Masereel, Frans | Mataré, Ewald | Matisse, Henri | Meidner, Ludwig | Mense, Carlo | Modersohn-Becker, Paula | Moll, Oskar | Morgner, Wilhelm | Mueller, Otto | Munch, Edvard | Münter, Gabriele | Nay, Ernst Wilhelm | Nesch, Rolf | Nolde, Emil | Nussbaum, Felix | Ophey, Walter | Orlik, Emil | Pankok, Otto | Pechstein, Hermann Max | Peiffer Watenphul, Max | Picasso, Pablo | Purrmann, Hans | Putz, Leo | Radziwill, Franz | Roeder, Emy | Rohlfs, Christian | Rouault, Georges | Röhricht, Wolf | Scharl, Josef | Schiele, Egon | Schmidt-Rottluff, Karl | Scholz, Werner | Schrimpf, Georg | Seewald, Richard | Sintenis, Renée | Slevogt, Max | Tappert, Georg | Toulouse-Lautrec, Henri de | Urbach, Joseph | Vlaminck, Maurice de | Vogeler, Heinrich | Walde, Alfons | Wauer, William | Werefkin, Marianne von | Yavlensky, Alexei Georgiyevich | Zadkine, Ossip | Ziegler, Richard