French Ambassador to Austria Opens Exhibition for "Jean Egger - Revolutionary of Modern Painting" in Linz

More+More+ ♦ Published: January 29, 2023; 23:17 ♦ (Vindobona)

The French Ambassador to Austria, Gilles Pécout, opened the exhibition "Jean Egger - Revolutionary of Modern Painting" in the Lentos Museum in Linz with a speech praising his influence on modern art.

French Ambassador Gilles Pecout Opened the Exhibition "Jean Egger - Revolutionary of Modern Painting" at the Lentos Art Museum in Linz / Picture: © / Peter Lechner / HBF and Lukas Hardt-Stremayr

The French Ambassador to Austria, Gilles Pécout, opened the exhibition "Jean Egger - Revolutionary of Modern Painting" in the Lentos Museum in Linz on Thursday, January 26, 2023, in the presence of the director, Hemma Schmutz, and the exhibition curator, Brigitte Reutner- Doneu.

In his speech, the ambassador paid tribute to the career of this Austrian painter (1897-1934), who "was ambitious to discover Europe". He moved to Paris in the 1920s and changed his first name from Hans to Jean. Paris thus continued an endeavor begun by Vienna to bring about an international modernity embodied in the artistic avant-garde.

Beyond this exhibition, Gilles Pécout paid tribute to the management of the Lentos Museum for their efforts in presenting French artists (in particular the painters André Masson and Georges Mathieu, represented in the permanent exhibition) as well as the museum's commitment to strengthening cultural ties with French ones Museums. The Jean Egger exhibition provides an overview of the artist's various phases in his life and can be seen in the Lentos Museum in Linz until May 5, 2023.

Jean Egger - actually Hans Egger - was born in 1897 in Hüttenberg in Carinthia. After studying at the Munich Academy of Fine Arts, he traveled several times. During a painting stay in Sicily, there was a significant leap in artistic development: Egger detaches the brushstroke from the representational representation in an almost gestural manner. In Paris, where he settled for several years from 1924, he quickly made contacts in high society around Sophie Szeps-Clémenceau, the sister-in-law of French Prime Minister Georges Clémenceau. From 1926 Egger exhibited regularly in renowned Parisian art salons. In the series of portraits of his partner Signe Wallin, his sensitive search for the strongest expression is particularly evident. With his solo exhibition at the Sloden Gallery in Paris in 1930, the artist was at the peak of his career.

Due to health reasons, he settled in Mallorca two years later. It was there that he created his last major works. Jean Egger dies at the age of only 37. He leaves primarily landscapes, portraits, and nudes. The liberation of color in his paintings and the radical nature of the dissolution of form make him one of the most important artists of the interwar period. The exhibition in the Lentos Art Museum follows the most important stages in the life of this exceptional Austrian artist and, using image comparisons, demonstrates his groundbreaking innovations, which have secured him a special place in art history as a prematurely accomplished artist.


French Embassy in Austria

Lentos Museum in Linz