25/11/2022 - 12/03/2023




Sammlung Moderne Kunst | Saal 21-26

This large-scale monographic exhibition is initially dedicated to the theme of travel, which was of existential importance to Max Beckmann (1884–1950) in both a biographical and symbolic sense. His life was marked by tragic experiences of war and uprooting, transit and exile, but also by glamorous vacations, the urge for freedom and the longing to travel. Around 70 loans from important private and public Beckmann collections in Europe and the USA, such as the first triptych DEPARTURE from MoMA, show the enormous range of travel-oriented pictorial motifs and concepts and complement the largest European collection of Beckmann paintings from the Modern Art Collection. Through a donation from Max Beckmann's family estate to the Max Beckmann Archive of the Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen (Bavarian State Painting Collections) in 2015, numerous previously unknown materials and documents such as photo albums and films are presented for the first time, providing a new and up-to-date view of the artist.

Curated by Oliver Kase and Christiane Zeiller with Sarah Louisa Henn

Media partner:
Süddeutsche Zeitung

MAX BECKMANN Departure, 1932-35
Museum of Modern Art, New York
© 2022. Digital image, The Museum of Modern Art, New York/Scala, Florence


Ticket Special Exhibition: 10 €, reduced 7 €
Ticket Special Exhibition and entire Museum: 15 €, reduced 10 €
Ticket Special Exhibition for owners of the 12-Euro / 5 Museum Day Ticket: 5 €, reduced 3 €


Max Beckmann, Departure, 1932-35
Room view
Max Beckmann, Departure, Die Argonauten, 1949/1950
Room view
Room view
Room view
Room view
Room view
Room view


Readings and concerts will take place in the exhibition as part of an extensive programme of education and events. In cooperation with "Kino der Kunst", a programme cinema will be developed based on Beckmann's own visits to the cinema. Questions of migration and identity will form the thematic "Departure" for a cooperation with YouthNet, an intercultural youth network. Numerous experts from various fields will have their say in the exhibition app newly developed for the Pinakothek der Moderne.

You can find the entire accompanying program at Events

Guided Tours & Art Education

Guided Program (in German)

Ausstellungsführungen: SA 16.00-17.00
Digitale Führungen „30 Minuten, ein Werk“: DO 28.12.2022, 26.01.2023, 23.02.2023 | 18.00-18.30
„30 Minuten, ein Werk“ | in der Ausstellung: DO 12.01., 09.02., 09.03.2023, 18.00-18.30
Themenführungen: FR, 16.30-17.30
Familienführungen: 1 x pro Monat, 2. SO 11.00-12.00
Känguruführungen: 21.12.2022, 18.01., 15.02.2023, 11.00-12.00
Live Chats: 1 x pro Monat, 1. DI 18.00-19.00
Kunstgespräche: 1 x pro Woche, SO, 13.00-16.00
„Eine Stunde mit…“: 1 x pro Monat, 1. DO, 18.30-19.30
Führungen in Kooperation mit der MVHS: FR, 15.00-16.30

In the art education room, visitors can continue to think about and transform Beckmann's visual worlds.

Migration and identity questions form the thematic "Departure" for a cooperation with YouthNet, an interreligious and intercultural network for young people in the city of Munich.
Young people with and without refugee experience will reflect on their personal stories against the background of Max Beckmann's biography. The results will be on display in a small show of works in Room 26 of the exhibition from 24 January 2023.

Information on group visits and exclusive tours can be found here.

Children on the East Staircase in the Pinakothek der Moderne
Photo Falk Kagelmacher


The exhibition is accompanied by a 350-page catalogue published by Hatje Cantz (German/English), designed by the award-winning Büro Bonbon, Zurich. In addition to illustrations of all the paintings on display and numerous previously unpublished archive materials and objects from the Max Beckmann Archive, the catalogue also contains introductory essays per theme, art-historical texts, and specially commissioned literary pieces by diverse authors such as Jim Arthur, Maria Cecilia Barbetta, Josefine Berkholz, Barbara C. Buenger, Ulrike Draesner, Françoise Forster-Hahn, Maike Grün, Sarah Louisa Henn, Florian Illies, Dževad Karahasan, Oliver Kase, Sibylle Lewitscharoff, Patrice Nganang, Nina Peter, Uljana Wolf, Christiane Zeiller and Hanns Zischler.

Max Beckmann. DEPARTURE
Eds. Oliver Kase, Sarah Louisa Henn, Christiane Zeiller
Hatje Cantz, 352 pp., 250 ills.,
German/English, 24.00 x 31.00 cm
45 Euro, ISBN 978-3-7757-5245-9

About the Exhibition

Travel, leave-taking, and departure shaped and punctuated Max Beckmann’s life (1884–1950). Often exhilarating but also often painful, these experiences were fuelled by luxurious holidays, wanderlust, and the desire for freedom, but also war, dislocation, transit, and exile. For the first time, departure and travel as core existential experiences of artists in the first half of the 20th century are the focus of an exhibition on Max Beckmann. The presentation of works of art alongside personal items and documents from the Max Beckmann Estate highlights the enormous range of travel-related imagery in his oeuvre. Beckmann gave his first triptych the ambiguous English title Departure. The theme of travel in art and myth still preoccupied him when he painted Argonauts, his last completed triptych.

The eight exhibition chapters show Beckmann in restless motion—as a tourist visiting fashionable seaside and ski resorts, as a flaneur observing the theatre of life in metropolitan streets, as a guest of bars, hotels, and cinemas, as an exile in Amsterdam during WWII with his freedom of movement severely restricted, and, finally, as a celebrated artist in the United States, where he explored new and unfamiliar landscapes with an eye on geology and mythology. We travel in Beckmann’s footsteps; we follow the private individual to actual places and events on his travels, but we also follow the painter, thinker, and reader into his studio, the site of imaginary, metaphysical, and cosmic journeys. “Departure from the illusions of life towards the essential realities that lie hidden beyond” was the crux of Beckmann’s aesthetic programme. As a result, the actual destinations increasingly dissolved and recoalesced into a painterly vision of passage and departure.

All documents, photographs, books and objects exhibited here are part of the artist’s estate at the Max Beckmann Archive of the Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen.

Max Beckmann, Selbstbildnis in Schwarz, 1944
Bayerische Staatsgemäldesammlungen


Herbert Schuchardt-Stiftung
Ernst von Siemens Kunststiftung
PIN. Freunde der Pinakothek der Moderne e.V.
Theo Wormland-Stiftung
Kulturstiftung der Länder
Vestner Aufzüge
Rudolf August Oetker-Stiftung
DJE Kapital AG
Adelhaid Winterstein


Max Beckmann, Departure, 1932-35
Museum of Modern Art
Photo of Max and Quappi Beckmann on vacation, Zandvoort, 1934/35, private photo album no. 1
Max Beckmann, Large still life with telescope, 1927
Max Beckmann, The harbor of Genoa, 1927
Max Beckmann, San Francisco, 1950
Max Beckmann, Young Men by the Sea, 1905
Max Beckmann, Bathing cabin (green), 1928
Max Beckmann, View from the porthole, 1934

Planning your visit

Open today till 6:00 pm

Opening Hours

Daily 10.00 – 18.00
Thursday 10.00 – 20.00
Monday closed


Pinakothek der Moderne
Barer Straße 40
80333 München

Admission prices (Inclusive opening hours )

Sunday admission 1€

Thursday – Saturday 10€
reduced 7€
Day pass (Alte Pinakothek, Pinakothek der Moderne, Museum Brandhorst, Sammlung Schack) 12€

Duration of the visit

ca. 60 minutes


information here

Further visitor information

More information about your visit
Vielen Dank!

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