Overmodeled ancestral skull

Picasso and tribal art

Pablo Picasso once said "That's what painting is really about" at the sight of the African masks in the Musée d'Ethnographie in Paris. And members of "Die Brücke" (The Bridge), a group of expressionist artists, took inspiration for the own carvings from the inventories of the museums of ethnology and fitted their studios out as exotic hideaways. The collector and founder of the Leopold Museum, Rudolf Leopold, was of the opinion that the art of so-called "primitive" ethnic groups was a priori expressionist.

It is therefore no wonder that he created a collection of 200 rare ancestor figures, dance masks, weapons and other unusual works of the woodcarving peoples of Africa and Oceania. This inventory is now shown for the first time in the exhibition "Foreign Gods". Juxtaposed against the exhibits are the works of important representatives of the Modern era, such as André Derain, Amedeo Modigliani, Ernst Ludwig Kirchner, Emil Nolde, Max Ernst - and even Pablo Picasso.

Foreign Gods. Fascination with Africa and Oceania

23 September 2016 - 9 January 2017

Leopold Museum

Museumsplatz 1 , 1070 Wien
  • Prices

    • Adults   €13
    • Museum Pass KHM & Leopold Museum: € 22
    • Your benefit with the Vienna Card: 10% off
  • Opening times

    • Mo, 10:00 - 18:00
    • We, 10:00 - 18:00
    • Th, 10:00 - 21:00
    • Fr - Su, 10:00 - 18:00
    • Open daily from June to August.
  • Accessibility

    • Main entrance
      • no steps (Double swinging doors )
    • Car parks Main entrance
      • 10 Parking spaces for people with disabilities
    • Elevator available
      • 89 cm wide and 210 cm low , Door 90 cm wide
    • Further information
      • Wheelchair accessible restroom available.
    • Comments

      Main entrance, access to all exhibition rooms and restaurant/café: no steps.

      6 free parking spaces for visitors with special needs on the premises (access: Burggasse / Volkstheater) with proper identification and 4 parking spaces for visitors with special needs in the parking garage (basement level 2 next to elevator, access: main entrance Museumsplatz).


Chair with Large Nude on Backrest

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner: Chair No. 1 with big nude on the backrest, around 1921

Kuma Mask with beak and horns

Bobo-Bwa, Burkina Faso/Mali: Kuma mask with beak and horns, 1st third 20th cent.

Still Life with Statues

Max Pechstein: Still life with statues, 1918

Overmodeled ancestral skull

Middle Sepik river, New Guinea: Overmodeled ancestor skull, around 1900 (bones, painted clay, snails, rattan, mother-of-pearl, hair)

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