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Hans Reichel

Würzburg 1892 - Paris 1958


Hans Reichel was born in Würzburg on August 9, 1892, at a time marked by artistic revolutions, war and social unrest. Reichel was attracted both to painting and writing. He earned his living by writing small feature articles and became acquainted with Rilke, whose poetic mysticism impressed him. In 1918 Reichel attended a school of modern art for a short time. His encounter with Paul Klee in 1919, when both artists had a studio at castle Werneck in Munich, was very decisive.
Compared to Klee's work, Reichel's work was less influenced by academically elaborated experiments, anything objective, claculating, ironic and all caricature were alien to him. The artist's stayed in contact even when Klee went to Bauhaus.
During his visits to Dessau, Reichel met Kandinsky, Gropius and Feininger. In 1929 Reichel went to Paris, where he made friends with the potographer Brassaï. In 1936 a life-long contact with Henry Miller commenced, whom Reichel taught watercolor painting.
From 1939 onwards, Hans Reichel was interned in various camps until he managed to excape and return to Paris in 1944. After the end of the war the artist continued to develop his art consistently, throughout his life improvisation and the expression of feelings have been very important to him.
Hans Reichel died in Paris on December 7, 1958. Hans Reichel's work was honored in a comprehensive exhibition shown in Cologne and at the Hanover "Kestner Gesellschaft" in 1960. In 2005 the "Museum im Kulturspeicher" in Wuerzburg showed a retrospective entitled "Ordnung und Chaos".


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Erich Heckel
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