Arno Breker - Sculptor to the Führer


ARNO BREKER
   
Sculptor to the Führer



 
  
At the 1933 Nürnberg Reichsparteitag, the new Chancellor, Adolf Hitler proclaimed the dawn of an era of 'New Art' - and instituted the Reichskulturkammer (RKK - Reich Chamber of Culture) to oversee the cultural life of Das Dritte Reich, (the Third Reich).
The Reichskulturkammer was headed by Dr. Paul Joseph Göbbels.
The Reichskulturkammer was to control all aspects of culture, and this included the fine arts, applied arts,  industrial design, sculpture, architecture and film.
'Germany wants again a “German Art,” and this art shall and will be of eternal value, as are all truly creative values of a people.
Should this art, however, again lack this eternal value for our people, then indeed it will mean that it also has no higher value today
When, therefore, the cornerstone of this building was laid, it was with the intention of constructing a temple, not for a so-called modern art, but for a true and everlasting German art, that is, better still, a House for the art of the German people.
It is therefore imperative for the artist to erect monuments, not so much to a period, but to his people.
For time is changeable, years come and go.
Anything born of and thriving on a certain epoch alone would perish with it.
And not only all which had been created before us would fall victim to this mortality, but also what is being created today or will be created in the future.
But the National-Socialists know of only one mortality, and that is the mortality of the people itself:
As long as a people exists, however, it is the fixed pole in the flight of fleeting appearances.
It is the quality of being and lasting permanence.
And, indeed, for this reason, art as an expression of the essence of this being, is an eternal monument.'
Adolf Hitler
  
S C U L P T O R   T O   T H E   F Ü H R E R

Arno Breker (July 19, 1900 – February 13, 1991) was a German sculptor, best known for his public works in Germany, which were endorsed by the authorities as the antithesis of "degenerate art".
He was born in Elberfeld, now Wuppertal and died in Düsseldorf.

“I am often asked why I use 
athletes as models and whether 
this is not outmoded. My 
answer: That which is good 
never becomes obsolete. 
Athletes are the best models for 
sculpture. It is impossible for a 
sculptor like me, who loves the 
triad of beauty of the body, spirit 
and soul, to overlook either a 
male or a female athlete."

                                                                           Professor Arnold Breker

Breker was born in Elberfeld, in the west of Germany, the son of a stonemason.
He began to study architecture, along with stone-carving and anatomy, and at age 20 was accepted to the Düsseldorf Academy of Arts where he concentrated on sculpture.
He first visited Paris in 1924, shortly before finishing his studies.
There he met with Jean Cocteau, Jean Renoir, Pablo Picasso, Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler, and Alfred Flechtheim.
In 1927 he moved to Paris, and was quickly accepted by the art dealer Alfred Flechtheim.
He also established close relationships with important figures in the art world, including Charles Despiau, Isamu Noguchi, Maurice de Vlaminck and André Dunoyer de Segonzac, all of whom he later portrayed.
He travelled to North Africa, producing lithographs which he published under the title "Tunisian Journey".
He also visited Aristide Maillol, who was later to describe Breker as "Germany's Michelangelo".
In 1932, he was awarded a prize by the Prussian Ministry of Culture, which allowed him to stay in Rome for a year.


In 1934 he returned to Germany on the advice of Max Liebermann.

Breker was supported by many Nazi leaders, especially Adolf Hitler.

Even Rosenberg later hailed his sculptures as expressions of the "mighty momentum and will power” (“Wucht und Willenhaftigkeit”) of Nazi Germany.
He took commissions from the German Government from 1933 through 1942, for example participating in a show of his work in occupied Paris in 1942, where he met Jean Cocteau, who appreciated his work.
He maintained personal relationships with Albert Speer and with Hitler.

In 1936 he won the commission for two sculptures representing athletic prowess, intended for the 1936 Olympic games, one representing a Decathlete (“Zehnkämpfer”) and the other The Victress (“Die Siegerin”).
In 1937 he married Demetra Messala a Greek model.
The same year, Breker joined the Nazi Party and was made "official state sculptor" by Hitler, given a large property and provided a studio with thousand assistants.
Hitler also exempted him from military service.
His twin sculptures The Party and The Army held a prominent position at the entrance to Albert Speer's new Reich Chancellery.





Albert Speer, Adolf Hitler & Arno Breker - Paris - June 1940

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THE NUDE IN THE ART OF THE THIRD REICH

Nudity in the shape of health and fitness was nothing new in Germany.
Organized social nudism started in Germany in the late nineteenth century.
By the 1930s nudist clubs (nacktkultur) developed into many different branches according to the political preferences of the membership.
Aryan health and vitality was especially promoted through the pages of Hans Suren’s "Sun cult" books.
Suren was a former German Army officer with colonial service in the tropics.
He strove to recreate the naked, carefree German tribes that existed before contact with Rome or Christianity.
His book 'Man and the Sun' (1924) sold over 235, 000 copies and it was reissued in 68 editions by 194.
'Man and the Sun' and 'Gymnastik 'were some of Hitler’s favourite books, and Nazi culture lovers often admired it.
Accordingly, approved, Aryan nudist organizations, some progressively stressing moderation of sun exposure, became integrated as National Socialist institutions.
Indeed, the very purpose of Gleichschaltung was to make the German people, the collective German Organism, feel as if they were part of a great, positive, movement.

To the Nazis nudism glorified the human body and made the individual, as part of the collective, become aware of the body’s inherent strength and beauty.
The removal of clothing also removed any evidence of rank or privilege among German Aryans, the primary goal of the Nazis.
Exercise in the nude, especially for young males, served to strengthen the body and build endurance for the ultimate goal of the Nazi State.
The cult of the Superman would grow ever more in importance as Hitler developed the political wing of the Thule Society.
The beauty of God's creation of man, naked and unashamed became in Germany an outward symbol of the strength and superiority of the Aryan race.
Great emphasis was placed upon the glorification of the Aryan superman though the portrayal of the naked body.




WORSHIP OF THE BODY




'WOUNDED HERO'
Arno Breker
'ADOLF HITLER'
Arno Breker




'RICHARD WAGNER'
Arno Breker




'RICHARD WAGNER'
Arno Breker


'ADOLF HITLER'
Arno Breker




'FREDERICH NIETSZCHE'
Arno Breker




'Διόνυσος' - 'DIONYSUS'
Arno Breker




'HEROIC HEAD'
Arno Breker



'HEROIC HEAD'
Arno Breker




'BEREITSCHAFT'
(Readiness)
Arno Breker




'Προμηθεύς'
'PROMETHEUS'
Arno Breker




'Προμηθεύς'
'PROMETHEUS'
Arno Breker






'Προμηθεύς'
'PROMETHEUS'
Arno Breker




Arno Breker working on Prometheus




'MALE NUDE TORSO'
Arno Breker




'GENIUS DES SIEGERS'
(Spirit of Victory)
Arno Breker




'ARYAN MAN'
Arno Breker



'MALE NUDE'
Arno Breker




'PSYCHE'
Arno Breker



'ANGEL OF DEATH'
Arno Breker



'DYING WARRIOR'
Arno Breker




'DYING WARRIOR'
(Bronze)
Arno Breker




'MALE NUDE RELIEF'
Arno Breker




'VICTORIOUS WARRIOR'
Arno Breker




'DER RACHER'
(The Revenge - Warrior with a Serpent)
Arno Breker




'KAMARADSCHAFT'
(Comradeship)
Arno Breker




'KAMARADSCHAFT'
(Comradeship)
Arno Breker




'DEPARTURE FOR BATTLE'
Arno Breker




'DER RUFER'
Arno Breker




'BEREITSCHAFT'
Arno Breker




'DER BANNERTRAGER'
(Standard Bearer)
Arno Breker




'EURIDICE & ORPHEUS'
Arno Breker





APOLLO & DAPHNE'
Arno Breker





'YOU & ME'
Arno Breker





'DER APFEL DES PARIS'
(The Apple of Paris)
Arno Breker






'ST SEBASTIAN'
Arno Breker





'OLYMPIA'
Arno Breker




'OLYMPIA'
Arno Breker





'TORSO DES ROSSBANDIGERS'
Arno Breker



'ALEXANDER THE GREAT'
Arno Breker




'ALEXANDER THE GREAT'
Arno Breker




'ADLER DES ZEUS'
Arno Breker

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