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Ferdinand Möller

 

1882

Ferdinand Möller, an architect’s son, born in Münster/Westphalia.

Training as a bookseller in various companies both in Germany and abroad.

1912

Moeller marries the painter Maria Garny.

1912

After seeing the Sonderbund exhibition in Cologne, Moeller decides to turn to art dealing and joins Galerie Ernst Arnold in Dresden.

1913

Möller takes over the Galerie Arnold branch in Breslau.

from 1917

Möller opens his own gallery in Breslau. The first exhibition brings together works by Lovis Corinth, Anselm Feuerbach, Max Liebermann, Max Slevogt, Wilhelm Trübner, and sculptures by Alfred Helberger.

from 1918

Moeller becomes director of Freie Secession in Berlin 
and opens a branch of his gallery in Berlin, on Potsdamer Straße 134c, where the author Theodor Fontane had lived until his death on 20 September 1898. The gallery was also in close proximity to Herwarth Walden’s gallery Der Sturm (Potsdamer Str. 134 a, today: Alte Potsdamer Straße, corner of Joseph-von-Eichendorff-Gasse).
Exhibitions with works by, among others, Theo von Brockhusen, Emil Bizer, Lovis Corinth, Erich Heckel, Max Kaus, Otto Mueller, Emil Nolde, Max Pechstein, Franz Radziwill, Christian Rohlfs, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff, Martel Schwichtenberg, Georg Kolbe, Wilhelm Lehmbruck, and Gerhard Marcks.

1919

Establishment of the publishing house Verlag der Galerie Ferdinand Möller.

1920

Closing of the Breslau gallery.

1923

Together with Wilhelm R. Valentiner, Detroit, Moeller organises an exhibition of contemporary German art at the Anderson Galleries in New York. The exhibition, accompanied by the catalogue A Collection of Modern Art, offers a first and comprehensive overview of avant-garde German art in the US.

1924

The family, the gallery and the publishing house move to Potsdam, Wollner Straße 14 (today: Otto Nagel Straße 14).

from 1927

Reopening of Galerie Ferdinand Möller in Berlin, on Schöneberger Ufer 38 (today: Schöneberger Ufer 78).
Continuation of the gallery and exhibition programme with the German artists Möller had already been representing. Möller also supports and fosters young and at the time unknown artists  (Philipp Bauknecht, Martin Christ, Kurt Mohr, Ernst Musfeld, Johannes Sass) by exhibiting them.

1929

Exhibition Die Blaue Vier with works by Paul Klee, Lyonel Feininger, Wassily Kandinsky, and Alexej Jawlensky.

1932

The gallery moves to Lützowufer 3, Berlin.

1933

In the summer, Möller made his gallery space available to the Nazionalsozialistischer Studentenbund, which shows an exhibition called 30 Deutsche Künstler. This exhibition is closed down after pressure from the Nazi 'Kampfbund für deutsche Kultur', but is reopened shortly thereafter.

1935

The gallery moves again, this time to Groß-Admiral-von-Köster-Ufer 39, Berlin (today: Schöneberger Ufer 79).

1937

Termination of exhibitions. Möller continues dealing with contemporary art, and now also with older works.

1937/1938

Construction of the summer house in Zermützel near Neuruppin (architect: Hans Scharoun, cf Ruby, I., Ruby, A.: Hans Scharoun - Haus Möller, Cologne 2004)

1938

Together with the German art dealers Karl Buchholz, Hildebrand Gurlitt, and Bernhard Alois Böhmer, Möller is authorised by the propaganda ministry to sell the art works confiscated from German museums as part of the ‘Degenerate Art’ campaign.

1939

Move to Magdeburger Straße 12, Berlin (today: Kluckstr. 12).

1943

Due to the increased bombing of Berlin, the art works are moved to Zermützel; the family also moves there.

1946

Together with the Office for the People’s Education, Möller organises the exhibition Freie deutsche Kunst in Neuruppin.

1949

In July, because of increasing conflicts with the German Central Administration in the Soviet Occupied Zone about the works of art coming from the ‘Degenerate Art’ campaign, as well as the increasingly difficult political situation, the Möller family moves to Cologne via West Berlin.

1951

Opening of the newly built Galerie Ferdinand Möller on Hahnenstraße 11 in Cologne (architect: Wilhelm Riphahn). The exhibition Die alten Meister der modernen Kunst in Deutschland [The Old Masters of Modern Art in Germany] presents works from the traditional gallery programme.
Until the end of 1955, there are numerous exhibitions of German avant-garde art. But also younger artists, such as Ernst Wilhelm Nay, Hans Uhlmann, and Fritz Winter are now represented by the gallery.

1956

Ferdinand Möller dies in January; the gallery is closed down.

 

Engelhardt, Kathrin (2013): Ferdinand Möller und seine Galerie - ein Kunsthändler in Zeiten historischer Umbrüche, Diss. 09.12.2013. Universität Hamburg.

Roters, Eberhard (1984): Galerie Ferdinand Möller Breslau - Berlin - Köln 1917-1956  -  Ein Beitrag zur Geschichte der Kunst und der Kunstgeschichte im 20. Jahrhundert. Berlin: Gebrüder Mann Verlag.