Munich New Artist's Association

The Neue Künstlervereinigung München (NKVM: New Artists' Association of Munich) was founded in Munich in 1909 as an alternative to established exhibition venues. Among the founding members were Wassily Kandinsky (at whose suggestion the NKVM was founded), Alexei von Jawlensky, Marianne von Werefkin, Gabriele Münter, Adolf Erbslöh and Alexander Kanoldt, all artists who had gone to Munich to study painting. The NKVM mounted an annual group show in the years 1909, 1910 and 1911 at Galerie Thannhauser in Munich. The first NKVM show at the Thannhauser Gallery lasted from 1 to 15 December 1909 and some one hundred and twenty-eight works by NKVM members and guests were exhibited; alongside the founding members, the guests included Paul Baum, Vladimir Bechteyeff, Erma Bossi, Pierre Girieud and Alfred Kubin. That first show met with an overwhelmingly negative response in the local press of the day. The second NKVM show was held from 1 to 14 September 1910. One hundred and fifteen works were shown. The circle of exhibiting artists had been enlarged to include some exponents of the French and Russian avant-gardes, notably Pablo Picasso, Georges Braque and Alexander Mogilevsky. The third and last NKVM group show lasted from 18 December 1911 to 1 January 1912. Tensions that had arisen among the members prior to the exhibition led to yet another schism, with apostate NKVM members uniting as "Der Blaue Reiter" and mounting a parallel exhibition of their own at the Thannhauser Gallery. Fifty-eight pictures by NKVM members Erma Bossi, Vladimir Bechteyeff, Adolf Erbslöh, Pierre Girieud, Alexei von Jawlenski, Alexander Kanoldt, Mossey Kogan and Marianne von Werefkin were exhibited at the last NKVM show. The parallel Blauer Reiter group show comprised forty-nine works by Henri Rousseau, Albert Bloch, David and Vladimir Burliuk, Heinrich Campendonk, Robert Delaunay, Elisabeth Epstein, Eugen von Kahler, Wassily Kandinsky, August Macke, Franz Marc, Gabriele Münter, Jean Bloé Niestlé and Arnold Schönberg. The immediate predecessor and forerunner of Der Blaue Reiter, the NKVM is justifiably regarded as a seminal 20th-century modern art movement in Germany.