The Avenger, 1914, cast 1930

  • Ernst Barlach, German, 1870-1938


  • Overall: 17 1/2 × 8 1/2 × 23 1/2 inches (44.5 × 21.6 × 59.7 cm)

Gift of Mrs. George Kamperman in memory of her husband Dr. George Kamperman


On View

  • Modern N230


European Modern Art to 1970

Barlach used dramatic gesture as a means of expressing a wide range of human emotions. “The Avenger’s” strong silhouette and fanlike robe suggest a powerful kinetic thrust and unrestrained aggression. The relatively inexpressive face of the figure is subordinated to the dynamic use of the entire figure as projectile. This work testifies to the enthusiasm with which Barlach, like other German artists and intellectuals, welcomed the outbreak of World War I, although their patriotism was, in Barlach’s case, short lived.

Signed, on left side above base: E Barlach 1/10


Inscribed: 1/10.

by 1946, Dr. and Mrs. George Kamperman (Detroit, Michigan, USA)

1964-present, gift to the Detroit Institute of Arts (Detroit, Michigan, USA)

Masterpieces from the Detroit Institute of Arts. Exh. cat., Bunkamura Museum of Art. Detroit, 1989, no.115 (ill.). Uhr, Horst. "Masterpieces of German Expressionism at the Detroit Institute of Arts." New York, 1982, p. 32 (ill.). "Arts and Crafts in Detroit." 1976, no. 247, p.188 (ill.). Bulletin of the DIA 44, no. 1 (1964-65): p. 10, p.14 (ill.). Origins of Modern Sculpture. Exh. cat., Detroit Institute of Arts and St. Louis City Art Museum. Detroit and St. Louis, 1946, cat. no. 74. [as "Revenge"]

Ernst Barlach, The Avenger, 1914, cast 1930, bronze. Detroit Institute of Arts, Gift of Mrs. George Kamperman in memory of her husband Dr. George Kamperman, 64.260.