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Best Denver Art-World Mystery Denver 2002 - The missing work of Max Lazarus

In 1939, German-Jewish artist Max Lazarus came to the United States from Trier, Germany, where he was that city's most important expressionist painter. Prominent in the Jewish community, Lazarus was commissioned to paint a mural on the ceiling of Trier's main synagogue. But the 1930s was not the best time to be a Jewish modernist in Germany, and Lazarus emigrated to the States. He eventually settled in Denver, where, in the 1940s, he got a job teaching arts and crafts and carried on his work as an artist until shortly before his death in 1964. Now the museum in Trier would like to collect his work, and since very few German pieces survived -- the Nazis burned down Trier's synagogue, and most of his other work was destroyed -- the institution has come looking in Denver. But nearly forty years after his death, Lazarus has been absolutely forgotten in the Mile High City, and except for a handful of pieces, his work is unknown. So the museum has launched a concerted effort, even hiring a detective to track down the estate. It's a good mystery, and, hopefully, one that will be solved.
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5 comments
texanna
texanna

Visit the museum web site and e mail Barbel Schulte (Barbara) for more information. The Trier museum has an exhibition in progress on Constantine the Roman Emperor.

baerbel.schulte@trier.de

http://www.museum-trier.de

Rick
Rick

Max was my grandmother's cousin. Many members of his family live in St. Louis. Spencer, enjoy your trip to Trier. My wife and I visited there two years ago. It is a wonderful city. The tourist office can arrange for a tour of Trier's Jewish history. Among the interesting things we learned: 1. Hitler refused to spend the night there because Trier didn't support him. 2. The local dialect "Trier-plat" (sp?) (which my great-aunt continued to speak 30 yearss after moving to St. Louis) is one of the sources of Yiddish. 3. The city rebuilt the synagogue for the few Jews who returned after the war (none of whom were in our family). Can you provide information on the Max Lazarus exhibition. We would like to attend.

Jimmy
Jimmy

Max was my Grandfather. Yes, we are trying to do a show in Trier when a new wing of the city museum opens in 2009. He and my father built a small home at 1664 Jackson St., Denver about 1946. The home also served at a studio.

Spencer
Spencer

Max Lazarus was my great-grandfather. I have several pieces of his artwork. I am planning a trip to Trier with my wife this summer (at the request of my grandmother-his daughter).

Sara Amber
Sara Amber

Will the person who wrote the article about Max Lazarus please contact me? I have a painting by him and he is connected to my family.

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