Neue Nationalgalerie


The outstanding private collection of Ulla and Heiner Pietzsch, a German art collector couple living in Berlin, is for the first time on public display at the Neue Nationalgalerie, Berlin. More than 180 works from the collection are on view until November 22, 2009.

For more than 40 years, Ulla and Heiner Pietzsch have been assembling an exceptional collection of works of art. The couple’s main focus lies on French Surrealism, yet the collection also comprises the further development of this art movement in America in the form of early Abstract Expressionism.

Major works by the most famous representatives of Surrealism such as Max Ernst, René Magritte, Joan Miró, Salvador Dalí, Paul Delvaux, André Masson and Yves Tanguy are part of the collection, as well as works by artists from the wider Surrealist circle, namely Victor Brauner, Leonor Fini, Oscar Domínguez or Valentine Penrose, who like their better known artist-colleagues were fascinated by the world of dreams and fantasy, the subconscious and the mysterious, sexuality and violence.

A remarkable number of works of early Abstract Expressionism signifies the rise of this movement in New York. The emigration of many European artists to the U.S. during the Second World War and an increase in international exhibitions there exerted an important influence on American painters. The Pietzsch collection offers the unique possibility to follow this artistic development. Early works by Jackson Pollock, Ad Reinhardt, Mark Rothko, Robert Motherwell and Barnett Newman as well as late works of the emigrated Max Ernst document the European influence on the development of Abstract Expressionism.

Remarkable within the exhibition is also the presentation of the Mexican development including a wonderful self-portrait by Frida Kahlo, who is not represented at all in German public museums.

The Pietzsch collection is presented together with a select number of works from the Nationalgalerie’s own collection. It is enriched by historical portrait photographs of the artists which are also part of the private collection.

A MySpace-Page and a YouTube-Channel have been created for the exhibitions, where numerous videos accompanying the show can be viewed. Surrealistic Haiku poems can be received regularly via Twitter. For all links see

The exhibition is made possible by the Verein der Freunde der Nationalgalerie (Association of Friends of the Nationalgalerie).

Neue Nationalgalerie
Potsdamer Straße 50
D – 10785 Berlin
+49 30 266 42 42 42

Opening Hours
Tue, Wed, Sun 10 am – 6 pm
Thu 10 am – 10 pm
Fri, Sat 10 am – 8 pm
Mon closed

Special Opening Hours during the Art Forum Berlin
24.09 – 27.09.2009 10am – 10pm