Mariano Akerman: The German Art Lectures

The German Contribution to the Visual Arts
Five educational lectures by Mariano Akerman

Dr. Thomas Ditt, German Embassy, Pakistan. Shape and Meaning is the title of a series of lectures given by the well-known art historian Mariano Akerman to 1,500 students in Islamabad and Rawalpindi.

The German contribution to the visual arts is the theme explored in this educational cycle where each lecture is different from the previous one. One of the conferences is devoted to the evolution of German art throughout the ages, others present German imagery inspired by the Bible. There are also lectures on modern art and even those which introduce the audience to the persistence of the Grotesque in German art.

The lectures have the support of the German Embassy in Islamabad. They are free of charge and are given in English, being simultaneuously translated into the Urdu language.

German Art - Its Peculiarities and Transformations. A series of lectures by Mariano Akerman
The contribution of German artists and their colleagues working in Germany encompasses the development of the print as an artistic means in its own right (Albrecht Dürer), outstanding formulations concerning the Grotesque (aesthetical category), the subjective approach of Romanticism, fusing the visible with the spiritual (Caspar David Friedrich), incursions in Impressionism (Max Liebermann) and Jugendstil (Max Laeuger and Ephraim Moses Lilien), the conjunction of Primitivism and the Soul (Ernst Ludwig Kirchner and Karl Schmidt-Rotluff), the simplification of the image leading to abstraction in 20th century art (Franz Marc and Wassily Kandinsky), sharp criticism of the bourgeoisie and the aftermath of WWI (Otto Dix and Georg Grosz), the exploration of the absurd and the apparently irrational nature of dreams (Kurt Schwitters, Max Ernst, Meret Oppenheim), and a logical amalgamation of the arts and crafts to supply normative archetypes to the industry as developed in the Bauhaus (Walter Gropius and Mies van der Rohe).
Problematic is the effect of totalitarianism on German Art, while luminous are the contributions of a number of German independent artists during WWII (Kollwitz, Heartfield, Weber) and other post-war painters such as and Anselm Kiefer.

Along the conferences, Mariano Akerman explores these and several other aspects of modern art while considering the historical context of a select group of German masterpieces. As a whole, Akerman’s collection of images underlines how diverse and meaningful German Art is.

Mariano Akerman - Artist and Historian
Born in Buenos Aires, Akerman studied at the School of Architecture of Universidad de Belgrano (Argentina), completing his education with a prized graduation project on the limits and space in modern architecture (1987).
Abroad from 1991, he received a full British Council Grant and researched the visual imagery of Francis Bacon (1995) and the architectural projects of Louis I. Kahn (1997). A professional art historian (Suma cum Laude, 1999), he contributes regularly to Knol and the Encyclopédie Larousse since 2009.
In Asia, Akerman developed the educational series of lectures From Van Eyck to Magritte (2005), Arte Argentino (2006), In the Spirit of Linnaeus (2007), Raisons d’être—Art, Freedom and Modernity (2008-10), and German Art (2010; review by Ishrat Hyatt).
Specializing in visual communication, architect and art historian Mariano Akerman is an experienced educator. He gives lectures at renowned institutions such as Museo Nacional de Bellas Artes in Argentina, the National Museum of the Philippines and the National College of Arts in Lahore. Only in Pakistan, he has given more than twenty lectures ad honorem (Islamabad, Rawalpindi, Lahore and Karachi, 2008-10).
An artist himself, Akerman exhibits his paintings and collages since 1979 onwards. He has received more than twelve major international prizes.

German art: four extraordinary images

Johann Georg Hertel (after Jeremias Wachsmuth), Winter, Rococo Music, Fancy Dress Ball, etching, 1750-60

Moses crossing the Red Sea, from the Luther Bible, c. 1530

Hartmann Schedel, Blemmyae from Liber chronicarum, woodcut, 1493

Last Judgement Tympanum: The Damned, Bamberg cathedral, relief, 13th century.

Shape and Meaning: The German Contribution to the Visual Arts - Five Educational Lectures by Mariano Akerman, German Embassy Islamabad, 3.1.2011, Education & Culture


Babur Kamal said...

Dear Mariano:
Thank you for the very enjoyable and informative German Art Lectures held in Islamabad this year.

Katharina Lack said...

Impressive. Congratulations and all the best for the new year 2011.

Nelly Conte said...


Gabriela Pinti said...

Hola Mariano, querido, te felicito. La verdad lo tuyo es admirable.

Maya Woscoff said...

Maro querido: todo lo mejor para vos. Siempre estás en mis pensamientos y corazón. Te quiero mucho. Millones de besos a la distancia.

Thomas Ditt said...

Dear Mariano,
Everything looks nice!
Sehr schön!

Nsir Malik said...

Life is beautiful.

Sarah Ehrlich said...


Siskind said...

Me alegro mucho Mariano! Estás haciendo cosas que te gustan y eso es muy lindo.

Liber Vigo said...

Mariano, querido, tu tarea es incansable. Te deseo los mayores éxitos. Un gran beso y abrazo, Liber

Silvia Weisz said...

Te felicito. Cuando veo tus fotos pienso que sos un triunfador. Un verdadero triunfador. Todo mi respeto y mi cariño

Spring Hill DC said...

Your work is rare and imaginary its presentation. I like them a lot. They are really good. You are doing a ery fruitful site, one with plenty of interesting stuff. I am impressed. No doubt your cultural initiatives are fresh water: you are the oasis and the light tower in your place. My best wishes. Love and kisses.