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GERMANY, Jesteburg

Conservation

'SECOND TEMPLE CYCLE'' PAINTED WALL PANELS OF KUNSTSTäTTE BOSSARD

2012

"This remarkable example of expressionist brick architecture, designed to display the works of its owners and dedicated to the ideals of Lebensreform (Life Reform) movement, dramatically depicts the social utopias and visions of the period. The chief display, 26 panels of the “Second Temple Cycle”, which fit the building perfectly, had been badly neglected and deserved careful restoration. The Jury was most impressed by the sophisticated methods used to re-establish the distorted panels and damaged paint surfaces. As a result, an unusual and significant piece of German art, which deserves to be better known, is now conserved and accessible for future generations to appreciate."

 

The wall panels were designed for a Kunsttempel, a building dedicated to the appreciation of arts and religious contemplation, erected in 1925-1929 by Johann and Jutta Bossard on the outskirts of the Lüneburger Heide national park. Conservation work was dedicated to the so-called "Second Temple Cycle" (1928), covering its walls: plywood panels painted in tempera and oil by Johann Bossard. Shortly after its completion, the Second Temple Cycle was severely damaged by dampness and was taken down by the artists in 1943. The aim of the conservation work was to level and regulate the various layers of veneering, straighten deformed panels, stop microbiological infection, stabilize paint layers and reduce blanching. As a result, the Temple of Fine Arts can today be appreciated as originally designed by the artists, with the interior decoration that is best suited for its structure.