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Friedrich Karl Gotsch

Friedrich Karl Gotsch

*  1900 Pries bei Kiel
† 1984 Schleswig

After graduating from school, Friedrich Karl Gotsch did his voluntary military service and then he began to study, which he soon cancelled. During his studies he took private lessons with the painter and graphic artist Hans Ralfs, who trained him so successfully that he was able to exhibit at his first one-man-show at the Kunsthalle Kiel in 1920. His teacher Ralfs introduced Gotsch to Edvard Munch's work, who became a life-long role model for Gotsch. Gotsch went to the Kunstakademie in Dresden in 1920, where he studied first under Hettner and, from 1921 to 1923, as Oskar Kokoschka's master pupil. He also frequented the circle around Otto Dix. At that time his style was influenced by his teacher's Expressionism, which he accentuated with graphic elements. He also worked successfully as a graphic artist at that time. After a long trip to the USA, long study trips to Paris (1926/27), Italy (1928), Southern France (1929) and Munich (1932/33) followed. Gotsch moved to Berlin in 1933, where his work was increasingly hindered by National Socialist diction of taste. He was drafted into the war in 1939, spending most of the war working as an interpreter. His Berlin studio was destroyed during the war. After his release from a British prisoner-of-war camp in 1945 he went to Eiderstedt. After working mainly in culture politics during the post-war years, he concentrated on painting from 1951 on. After a period of intensive dealing with Picasso's Cubism and experimenting with abstract forms of composition, the artist developed his 'late Expressionism', which is typical for his œuvre. As one of only a few objectively painting artists, Gotsch found approval during his lifetime. He participated in numerous exhibitions and received well-known awards. The acceptance of a major part of his works to the collection of the Petit Palais in Geneva in 1964 and the foundation of the K.F. Gotsch-Stiftung at the Schleswig-Holsteinisches Landesmuseum in 1968 early enhanced his national approval.