Herwarth Walden

Herwarth Walden (actually Georg Lewin, born September 16, 1878 in Berlin, † October 31, 1941 in Saratov ) was a German writer, publisher, gallery owner, musician and composer. Walden was one of the main promoters of German avant-garde of the early 20th century ( Expressionism, Futurism, Dada, New Objectivity ). He founded in 1910 the magazine Der Sturm, which existed until 1932. From 1912, he operated the tower gallery; under his leadership, the exhibition of the First German Autumn Salon in Berlin took place in 1913. The poet Else Lasker-Schüler was his first wife.


Georg Lewin, who came from a wealthy Jewish family, he studied in his youth, composition and piano in Berlin and Florence. His choice of musical talent and his chosen artistic training distanced him early from the upper-class world of his parents' house. He wrote poetry and prose and was a critic of literature, music and art. In 1903 he founded the "Society for Art ", which in the following years a large number of important writers such as Heinrich and Thomas Mann, Frank Wedekind, Rainer Maria Rilke, Richard Dehmel, Alfred Döblin and Else Lasker-Schüler belonged.

On November 30, 1903 married Lewin and Else Lasker-Schüler. The marriage was divorced in 1912. Lasker-Schüler Lewin owed ​​his pseudonym " Herwarth Walden " inspired by Henry Thoreau's Walden novel; or, Life in the Woods ( 1854).

The magazine Der Sturm

From 1910 to 1932 Walden published the magazine Der Sturm, which he founded together with Alfred Doblin and was one of the most important publications of Expressionism. Among the literary staff included, among others, Peter Altenberg, Max Brod, Richard Dehmel, Anatole France, Knut Hamsun, Arno Holz, Karl Kraus, Selma Lagerlof, Adolf Loos, Heinrich Mann, Otto Nebel, Paul Scheer Beard, René Schickele, August Stramm. In 1910 came to Walden excitation Oskar Kokoschka to Berlin and worked on the magazine. A large-format portrait Walden, the Kokoschka painted, is now in the Stuttgart State Gallery.

The Storm Gallery and other activities

1912 married Walden and the Swede Nell Roslund. He was active in the following years strengthened as a gallery. So he ran the Storm Gallery, in 1912, among other pictures of the Blue Rider and Italian Futurism were seen. He discovered and promoted new talents such as Georg Schrimpf and Maria Uhden.

As a contrast event for Sonderbundausstellung that had been aligned in Cologne in 1912, the aligned Walden exhibition of modern art of the First German Autumn Salon in Potsdamer Straße 75 was held from April 2, 1913 held by 1 December 1913 not far from his gallery "Der Sturm " a on Potsdamer Straße 134

After war broke out in 1914 Nell Walden worked thanks to their Scandinavian language skills for the " News Bureau The Tempest", which worked for various German intelligence services in the Nordic countries and the Netherlands and formed the financial basis for the assault companies in the interwar period. For later constructivists Thilo Maatsch 1916 was the visit of a storm - exhibition the key event to turn to painting; his works were shown there in 1927.

1916 Walden founded the avant-garde spirit of the magazine Der Sturm, the storm 's Art School and organized storm - nights when storm - artists presented their seals. The following year he opened a storm - bookstore, the 1918 storm - stage and the magazine of the same followed. They were intended to promote the Expressionist stagecraft.

1918 Walden Member of the KPD. A year later, he appropriated his wife's art collection Walden. 1924 Herwarth Walden and Nell Roslund divorced because she did not agree with his turn to communism. Two years later he married a Russian woman who died in 1930 of tuberculosis.

Exile in Moscow

In view of the Gathering Nazism he left with the translator Ellen Bork in 1932 Germany and went to Moscow, where they were married. He worked there as a teacher and journalist. His sympathies for the avant-garde, however, soon aroused the suspicion of the Stalinist government of the Soviet Union. In 1933, her daughter Sina Walden to the world.

1941 Walden was arrested. His wife and daughter sought refuge at the German embassy, and then returned to Berlin. Walden died on 31 October of the year 1941 in a Soviet prison in Saratov. The finding his time of death was Sina Walden in 1966 after a visit to Moscow.


  • The Storm (Journal, 1910-1932 )
  • Dafnislieder for voice and piano (1910 )
  • The Book of Human Kindness (novel, 1916)
  • The hardness of the world love (novel, 1917)
  • The conceptual in poetry (essay, 1918)
  • Child ( Drama, 1918)
  • People ( Drama, 1918)
  • Among the senses (novel, 1919)
  • The new painting ( essays, 1920)
  • Faith ( Drama, 1920)
  • Insight into Art (1920 )
  • Sin ( Drama, 1920)
  • The pair ( Drama, 1920)
  • First Love ( Drama, 1920)
  • Last Love ( Drama, 1920)
  • In Geschweig love ( poems, 1925)
  • Chalk cliffs of Rügen ( oil painting, 1937)
  • Vulgar -Expressionism (essay, 1938)