UK/Amersham 9 March to 26 August 2024

Amersham Museum: www.amershammuseum.org
Marie-Louise von Motesiczky Gallery

Dorothy, Marie-Louise von Motesiczky, 1945, oil on canvas, Amersham Museum
Dorothy, Marie-Louise von Motesiczky, 1945, oil on canvas, Amersham Museum

In 1940, Vienna-born artist Marie-Louise von Motesiczky (1906-1996) moved to Amersham, with her mother Henriette and their housekeeper Marie Hauptmann. Fleeing persecution in Austria, initially via Amsterdam and London, they settled in Buckinghamshire. She spent time with other émigrés living in Amersham, including the future Nobel prize-winning author Elias Canetti (1905-94), and the composer, pianist and teacher Francesco Ticciati (1893-1949).

Starting with her six paintings in the Amersham Museum’s collection, explore Marie-Louise’s time in Amersham, her direct community on Chestnut Lane and fellow émigrés who visited her there during (and directly after) the Second World War. Amersham was a refuge for many during the War, and Marie-Louise would have encountered others who had settled there temporarily.  Beyond her own circle of friends, she would have witnessed evacuee children sent to Amersham to live with local families, a community of Jewish people, mostly from London, and people displaced from the capital and other cities. She would have seen the Home Guard on manoeuvres, and witnessed soldiers based throughout the town, in transit before missions elsewhere. There was a wider official presence too, with elite naval officers training in old Amersham, scientists establishing a research centre in Little Chalfont and German prisoners of war helping MI5 and MI6 at Latimer House. The exhibition features examples of Marie-Louise’s work in the original and reproduction, that captured some of this wartime community.

The exhibition has a specific focus on the road Marie-Louise lived on, Chestnut Lane, on the border between Amersham and the village of Chesham Bois. In the 1940s the road was unmade, without street lights and featured a mix of large and small houses, a pub and a local shop. At the end of the road there was (and still is) a local farm surrounded by rolling hills. The exhibition features some of the people who lived on the road, their jobs and work to support the war effort, in order to imagine who Marie-Louise saw and knew, and to better understand the town’s wartime community.

The exhibition also includes works created through Amersham Museum’s community learning programme. Through four artist-led workshops, families from the South Bucks Jewish Community have learned about Marie-Louise and her portraiture, and created their own self-portraits for display. The Museum has also worked with 180 children from Chestnut Lane Infant School, which is located directly opposite Cornerways, the house Marie-Louise lived in. Artwork created by the Year 2 children about the people and events that took place on Chestnut Lane in the 1940s features in an illustrated map and trail.

UK/London 7 March to 15 December 2024

Burgh House, Hampstead: www.burghhouse.org.uk
Marie-Louise von Motesiczky: (in)Visible Women
Marie-Louise von Motesiczky Gallery

Exhibitions 5

Exhibitions 6UK/London 31 July 2019 – 16 March 2020 and July-September 2020

Tate Britain  www.tate.org.uk/visit/tate-britain
The Marie-Louise von Motesiczky Display
Drawn from the Archive now belonging to Tate, to inaugurate the naming of the Archive Gallery in the artist’s honour.

Model, Vienna, 1929
Model, Vienna, 1929

Austria/Vienna 25 January – 19 May 2019

Belvedere Museum  www.belvedere.at/city_of_women



Portrait of a Russian Student, 1927 (Schlenker 16)
Portrait of a Russian Student, 1927 (Schlenker 16)

UK/London 31 July 2018 – 14 September 2019

Tate Modern https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/exhibition/magic-realism
Magic Realism. Art in Weimar Germany 1919-33

Marie-Louise’s painting of Portrait of a Russian Student, 1927, a recent gift to Tate from the Trust, is part of this free exhibition.




Austria/Vienna 23 March – August 2018

Belvedere Museum https://www.belvedere.at/Beyond_Klimt

Self-portrait with Comb, 1926 (Schlenker 13)
Self-portrait with Comb, 1926 (Schlenker 13)

Belgium/ Brussels 21 September 2018 – 20 January 2019

BOZAR https://www.brusselsmuseums.be/en/museums/bozar-centre-for-fine-arts

Beyond Klimt. New Horizons in Central Europe

Gustav Klimt is probably the artist most associated with Austrian art. His death in 1918 – the same year as the deaths of Egon Schiele, Koloman Moser, and Otto Wagner – is seen as the end of an era. However, their influence on the art world had waned even before this. Only peripherally affected by the political turmoil, a vibrant art scene developed in the countries of the Austro-Hungarian Empire with artists striving for change.

The interwar years were characterised by the wish for international connections that transcended new political and ideological boundaries. There was a vibrant exchange of ideas between artists resulting in constructivist, expressionist, and fantastical trends. Cosmopolitan networks emerged among the artists of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire while art magazines made an increasingly important contribution to disseminating these new ideas. The outbreak of the Second World War brought this internationalism to an abrupt end and the sense of a shared culture faded, once again, into the background. The exhibition seeks to reveal the parallels during this period and demonstrate continuity and change in the art of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and its successor nation states.

The Undertaker, 1925 (Schlenker 2)
The Undertaker, 1925 (Schlenker 2)
Self-portrait in Blue, 1964 (Schlenker 195)
Self-portrait in Blue, 1964 (Schlenker 195)

UK/London 13 March – 29 April 2018

Ben Uri Gallery benuri.org.uk

Out of Austria

Marking the 80th anniversary of the Anschluss (annexation of Austria by Nazi Germany), the exhibition Out of Austria brings together around 40 works by more than 20 Austrian artists who fled to Great Britain during the era of National Socialism, examining their experiences, careers, impact and legacy as émigré artists in the UK.

Museum Boijmans


Netherlands/Rotterdam 28 January – 29 April 2018

Museum Boijmans Van Beuningen www.boijmans.nl
A selection of work from the 2017 gift of Marie-Louise’s work is on display in the first half of 2018.

Austria/Vienna 17 November 2017 – 4 March 2018

Belvedere Museum www.belvedere.at/aging_pride

Aging Pride: Paintings from the recent gift made by the Marie-Louise von Motesiczky Charitable Trust to the Belvedere Museum are part of this exhibition of historical and contemporary work.


Marie-Louise von Motesiczky’s Self-portrait in Black of 1959England/London 27 May – 1 October 2017

National Portrait Gallery www.npg.org.uk
Émigrés: Twentieth-Century Self-Portraits by Artists from Abroad

Marie-Louise von Motesiczky’s Self-portrait in Black of 1959 was presented by the Trustees to the National Portrait Gallery in August 2016, to complement the portrait of Elias Canetti which the artist presented to the National Portrait Gallery in 1992. Self-portrait in Black is now on permanent display in the NPG’s galleries for 20th century portraiture from 1900-1960.




Workman, Paris, 1926Austria/Vienna 4 November 2016 – 1 May 2017

Jewish Museum of the City of Vienna www.jmw.at

The Better Half: Jewish Women Artists Before 1938

Four paintings by Marie-Louise von Motesiczky are included in this exhibition about a remarkable body of talented women who forged their practice, often against all the odds. A large number of the artists came from assimilated Jewish families. Painters such as Tina Blau, Broncia Koller-Pinell, Marie-Louise von Motesiczky, or ceramic artists Vally Wieselthier and Susi Singer have established a place for themselves in the history of art. But many others have unjustifiably sunk into oblivion—the sculptor Theresa Feodorowna Ries, the painters Grete Wolf-Krakauer and Helene Taussig, or the painter and graphic artist Lili Rethi. The exhibition presents forty artists and describes their unusual training and careers, marked by a struggle for recognition in a male-dominated art world. It also looks at promising careers that were interrupted through exile or ended forever in the Nazi extermination camps.

Illust. Workman, Paris, 1926 (Schlenker 12)

Austria/Linz  23 October 2015 – 21 February 2016

Lentos Kunstmuseum  www.lentos.at
Mother of the Year.
Between Empowerment and Crisis: Images of Motherhood from 1900 to Today

Four portraits by Marie-Louise von Motesiczky  of her mother Henriette from 1933-1975 were included in this exhibition.

Illust. Mother with a straw, 1962 (Schlenker 186)


Kröpfelsteig, Hinterbrühl, 1927Austria/Bregenz  19 June – 11 October 2015

Vorarlberg Museum  www.vorarlbergmuseum.at
Pictorial Strategies between the Wars: Art in Austria 1918-1938

Illust. Kröpfelsteig, Hinterbrühl, 1927 (Schlenker 17)


Psychoanalyst, 1962 (Schlenker 183)

Austria/Vienna  25 March – 4 October 2015

Jewish Museum of the City of Vienna  www.jmw.at
The Ringstrasse. A Jewish Boulevard?

Illust. Psychoanalyst, 1962 (Schlenker 183)



'The Old Song', 1959USA/New York 7 October – 24 December 2014

Galerie St Etienne, 24 West 57th Street www.gseart.com

Marie-Louise Motesiczky. The Mother Paintings

The importance of Marie-Louise’s relationship with her mother Henriette (1882-1978) was reflected in the many portraits she made, particularly in Henriette’s later years when Marie-Louise depicted the effects of old age with an unflinching but affectionate and humorous eye. The exhibition will draw upon work in public and private collections including loans from major UK institutions.

Galerie St Etienne Press Release

Psychoanalyst, 1962 (Schlenker 183)USA/New York 9 April – 28 June 2013

Galerie St Etienne, 24 West 57th Street www.gseart.com

Face Time. Self and Identity in Expressionist Portraiture
Marie-Louise von Motesiczky, Psychoanalyst, 1962 (Schlenker 183)


237 Self-portait with CanettiSwitzerland/Basel, 12 -17 June 2012, Hall 2.0, Stand D11

Galerie St Etienne, 24 West 57th Street www.gseart.com

Marie-Louise von Motesiczky: Two Men in Her Life. An installation exploring the artist’s relationships with Oskar Kokoschka and Elias Canetti.


Still-life with sheepEngland / London / 31 January to 12 August 2012

Tate Britain

  • Still-life with Sheep, 1938

The exhibition reveals how British art has been fundamentally shaped by successive waves of migration from the sixteenth and seventeenth century Flemish and Dutch landscape and still-life painters who came to Britain in search of new patrons, through moments of political and religious unrest, to Britain’s current position within the global landscape.

Austria / Vienna / 18 May  to 31 July 2011

Wienerroither & Kohlbacher GmbH, Freyung 1 – Strauchgasse 2, 1010 Vienna, Austria
Marie-Louise von Motesiczky , Vienna 1906 – 1996 London.

USA / New York /  13 October to 30 December 2010

Galerie St Etienne, 24 West 57th Street www.gseart.com
Paradise Lost & Found

Austria / Vienna / 19 November 2009 to 28 March 2010

Wien Museum
Kampf um die Stadt. Politik, Kunst und Altag um 1930.

  • Portrait of a Russian Student, 1927
  • Still-life with Photograph, 1930

England / Southampton / 28 September to 9 December 2007

Southampton City Art Gallery
Marie-Louise von Motesiczky
The painter Marie-Louise von Motesiczky was born in Vienna in 1906. Leaving Vienna after the Anschluss in 1938, she spent the rest of her life in England. Her artistic career, which spans seventy years, began in the 1920s when she visited Max Beckmann’s master class in Frankfurt. Several critically acclaimed exhibitions, especially in London and Vienna, have acquainted the public with Motesiczky’s oeuvre which comprises portraits, self-portraits, still-lifes, landscapes and allegorical paintings.

Germany / Passau / 2 June to 9 September 2007

Museum Moderner Kunst
Marie-Louise von Motesiczky
The Museum Moderne Kunst showed Marie-Louise von Motesiczky’s centenary exhibition in its beautiful surroundings in the old part of the town.

Austria / Vienna / 8 March to 20 May 2007

Wien Museum
Who is Marie-Louise von Motesiczky? Malerin zwischen Wien und London

While Marie-Louise von Motesiczky’s life spans nearly a century, her work mirrors a fragile world between Vienna and London. The artist grew up in a wealthy aristocratic Jewish family in turn-of-the-century Vienna. Well-known musicians, artists and writers were frequent visitors to the family. Her grandmother, Anna von Lieben, was one of Sigmund Freud’s earliest patients.

Motesiczky’s hopes for an artistic career were dashed by the National Socialists. She left Austria with her mother in March 1938, eventually settling in London where she became part of a circle of exiles and met the writer Elias Canetti with whom she had a long relationship. Canetti showered her work with praise: “You are a very great painter and, whether you want it or not, the world will come to know it. Every picture that you will paint will enter the history of painting.”

Motesiczky’s paintings show the immediate surroundings of the artist. She especially liked to explore human beings and their faces with her brush.

To celebrate the opening of the exhibition in Vienna the Marie-Louise von Motesiczky Charitable Trust held a reception at Palais Todesco, the family’s former home opposite the opera, on 6 March 2006, where friends and family of Marie-Louise gathered.

The artist Milein Cosman, a friend of Marie-Louise von Motesiczky, was interviewed by the Austrian television ORF. Frederick Baker’s film on the artist’s family, Die Motesiczkys. Stilleben mit Cello, Jagdhund und Staffelei, was shown in ORF 2 on 11 March 2007 and 3sat on 2 April 2007.

Germany / Frankfurt / 24 Sept 2006 to 11 Feb 2007

Museum Giersch
Marie-Louise von Motesiczky

In 1927/28 Marie-Louise von Motesiczky visited Max Beckmann’s master class at the Städelschule in Frankfurt am Main. The German painter was to become a life-long artistic influence and friend. Motesiczky’s experiences as Beckmann’s pupil are recorded in the text Max Beckmann als Lehrer. Erinnerungen einer Schülerin des Malers, first published in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung.

The magnificent villa on the Schaumainkai hosted an exhibition of 76 paintings and numerous drawings, thus, for the first time in Germany, giving a comprehensive overview of the oeuvre of an artist who must be counted among the most important artists of the twentieth century.

England / Liverpool / 11 April to 13 August 2006

Tate Liverpool
Marie-Louise von Motesiczky

Celebrating the hundredth anniversary of Marie-Louise von Motesiczky’s birth, this exhibition brought the work of this acclaimed, yet relatively unknown, artist to a much wider audience than ever before. The exhibition presented around 70 paintings and a number of drawings, exploring the transition from her hard-edged realist style of the twenties to the poetic realism of her later work. Motesiczky is particularly known for her portraits, including compelling self-portraits and a moving series devoted to her ageing mother recording her decline.

Austria / Vienna / 1994

Österreichische Galerie Belvedere
Marie-Louise von Motesiczky

Two years before she died, Motesiczky experienced a final triumph in her native Austria. Organized by Peter Black, the Österreichische Galerie Belvedere in Vienna held a retrospective exhibition of Motesiczky’s work in spring 1994. Fifty works, mainly paintings but also a few drawings, from seven decades were shown, spanning Motesiczky’s entire career. The accompanying catalogue, which sold out completely, brought together two earlier essays on Motesiczky by Ernst Gombrich and Benno Reifenberg. In the wake of the exhibition, the Österreichische Galerie also purchased Self-portrait with Comb, 1926, its second Motesiczky painting. The exhibition went on to be shown at the Manchester City Art Galleries later in the year.

England / London / 1985

Goethe Institut London
Marie-Louise von Motesiczky, Paintings Vienna 1925 – London 1985

Initiated by the Viennese author and former cultural affairs correspondent in London for the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Hilde Spiel, the show assembled 73 paintings from numerous public and private collections as well as the artist’s possession. The sizeable catalogue contained introductions to Motesiczky’s work by Günter Busch, the former director of the Kunsthalle Bremen, Richard Calvocoressi (then a curator at the Tate, London, subsequently Director of the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh and currently Director of The Henry Moore Foundation) and the art historian Ernst Gombrich who greatly admired her paintings.