Painting: Valhalla Revamped

Even after the turn of the century, most German art still looked like stage sets commissioned by Wagner. Idealized landscapes, preferably misty, thronged with the gods of Greece, Valhalla toughs and Bacchic satyrs like some sort of mythological beaux-arts ball. It took a few artists of more personal vision to make German art modern.

At first Lovis Corinth did not look as if he would be one of them. He went to study art in Paris when impression ism was already a decade old. Rather than join this movement, Corinth be came a...

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