With great excitement, The Phillips Collection’s announces the acquisition of 46 gifts of German and Danish art to the museum’s permanent collection, generously given by art collector and dealer Michael Werner. With selections from the gift on view beginning September 12, this extraordinary gift of painting, sculpture, and works on paper showcases the museum’s commitment to building a carefully crafted collection that reflects museum founder Duncan Phillips’s vision and distinctive eye and advances the understanding of 20th-century European art.
In 1963, Michael Werner opened his first gallery in Berlin, with an exhibition of works by Georg Baselitz. Since then, Michael Werner Gallery—now based in Berlin, New York, and London—has worked with a number of the most important artists of the 20th century, including Marcel Broodthaers, James Lee Byars, Peter Doig, Jörg Immendorff, Per Kirkeby, Markus Lüpertz, A. R. Penck, and Sigmar Polke. Michael Werner and Michael Werner Gallery have a long-standing relationship with the Phillips; their collaboration resulted in this generous gift of 46 works by Georg Baselitz, Jörg Immendorff, Per Kirkeby, Markus Lüpertz, and A. R. Penck. All five were part of a generation of postwar artists who breathed new life into figuration, their work characterized by enormous versatility and a constant search to strike balance between abstraction and figuration, form and color.