George Grosz

George Grosz

Artist George Grosz (American, b. Germany, 1893-1959) was a leader in the Dada art movement in 1920s Berlin. His 1926 painting Eclipse of the Sun, which is part of the Heckscher Museum’s Collection, is among the most significant paintings in a public collection on Long Island and one of the masterpieces of 20th-century art. Grosz moved to the United States and resided in Huntington from 1947 until his death in 1959. Learn more about his life, work, and close connections to Huntington and The Heckscher Museum of Art in the timeline below.


2024


The Heckscher Museum mounts the exhibition George Grosz: The Stick Men in collaboration with the Das Klein Grosz Museum.

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2000s – Present


Eclipse of the Sun remains on view at The Heckscher Museum, except when it travels to major exhibitions held at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Neue Galerie New York.


1980s – 1990s


Hundreds of thousands of people view Eclipse of the Sun in exhibitions held throughout Germany and across the United States.


1968


Museum Director Eva Gatling leads a successful community fundraising effort to acquire and conserve the rediscovered masterwork Eclipse of the Sun, which had not been on public view since the 1920s.

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1959


The Heckscher Museum organizes George Grosz on Long Island.

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1950s


While continuing to teach at the Art Students League in New York City, Grosz holds private art classes in Huntington.


1947


The Grosz family moves to Huntington, New York, buying a home about one mile from The Heckscher Museum. Grosz lives there until just before his death in 1959.


1930s – 1940s


Grosz lives in Bayside and then Douglaston, New York. He teaches at the Art Students League. Over the years, his students include such notable figures as Romare Bearden, Louise Nevelson, and Jackson Pollock.


1933


Accepting a teaching job at the Art Students League in New York City, Grosz moves to America with his family just as Adolf Hitler becomes Chancellor of Germany. The Nazis later denounce Grosz’s artwork as “Degenerate Art” and strip him of his citizenship.


1926


Grosz paints Eclipse of the Sun in Germany.

Artwork in the Collection

George Grosz, Eclipse of the Sun, 1926, Oil on canvas. 81-5/8 x 71-7/8 in.
Museum Purchase 1968.1

The Heckscher Museum acquired Eclipse of the Sun in 1968. Eclipse of the Sun is a masterpiece of political art. As signaled by the dollar sign darkening the sun, a symbol of life, it critiques the greed and violence of Germany’s military, politicians, and industrialists. The painting’s tilted perspective, dissonant color, and ambiguous sense of space underscore the instability of the period following World War I. Grosz depicts mindless bureaucrats in a grim setting surrounding the decorated general Paul von Hindenburg, who was Field Marshal during World War I, served as second president of the Weimar Republic, and later named Adolf Hitler chancellor in 1933. An industrialist carrying weapons whispers in Hindenburg’s ear. A donkey representing the German people stands near a bloody sword and listens with big ears, yet wears blinders of ignorance. Confined and stepped on, a youth juxtaposed with a skeleton warns of the fate of future generations.

Including Eclipse of the Sun, The Heckscher Museum currently owns over 20 works of art by George Grosz. See all artwork by Grosz in the Museum’s Collection.

George Grosz: The Stick Men Exhibition Catalog

George Grosz: The Stick Men Exhibition Catalog

Accompanying the George Grosz: The Stick Men exhibition is an illustrated 152-page hardcover book in German and English. A collaboration between The Heckscher Museum of Art and Das kleine Grosz Museum, Berlin, where the exhibition debuted, the publication explores the history, context, and legacy of George Grosz’s Stick Men series, which he completed in Huntington, NY, after World War II.

The publication includes essays by Pay Matthis Karstens, Ph.D., and Juerg Judin, Ph.D., at Das kleine Grosz Museum (“George Grosz’s Stick Men”), and Karli Wurzelbacher, Ph.D., Chief Curator at The Heckscher Museum of Art (“’Demons in the Suburbs’ George Grosz on Long Island”).

$35 for Heckscher Museum Members
$45 for Non-Members
Plus shipping via USPS

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Related News

Related News

October 10, 2019
COLLECTION SPOTLIGHT: George Grosz and “Eclipse of the Sun”
January 5, 2020
Putting The Heckscher Museum of Art “On the Map”: The Legacy of Eva Ingersoll Gatling
more museum news

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