Prints and Drawings
The Department of Drawings and Prints houses a collection of 25 thousand works on paper: sketches, drawings, prints, artists’ books, and illustrated books of artists from all periods, with a special emphasis on artists of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The department collection has grown along with the Museum, thanks to the contributions of collections from all over the world, and acquisitions, particularly of Israeli art, which is represented through all periods.
An important and unique component of the collection is the assemblage of drawings and prints representing early twentieth century German Expressionism. The Dr. Karl Schwarz Collection, the Goeritz Collection, and the Hermann Struck Collection which were donated to the Tel Aviv Museum in its early years led to the donation of another important collection –that of Avraham Horodisch from Amsterdam, a collector and publisher of prints from Germany in the 1920s. Dr. Horodisch chose the TA Museum as the worthy repository of his important and rare collection, which includes prints of the first generation and particularly the second generation of German Expressionism, and this, due to his awareness of the quality of the collection in this genre held by the Museum.
An important unit of the collection consists of 150 prints by the renowned Norwegian artist Edvard Munch. The collection was donated in 1986 by Charles and Evelyn Kramer of New York, who had previously given a significant donation of a collection of self-portraits by artists, from the 15th century to the present. The Munch Collection at the Tel Aviv Museum of Art, as one of the largest collections in the world of prints by this artist, offers a representative selection of Munch's graphic work: etchings, lithographs, and colored woodcuts – beginning with the earliest of them created in Berlin (1894-95) and through the prints made in his last years. The collection contains most of the important motifs and imagery in his oeuvre, in different versions and using different techniques.
An additional component of the collection consists of 300 prints and books by Surrealist artists which were also donated by Charles and Evelyn Kramer of New York in 1990. This collection directs attention to the close collaboration between the artists, writers, and poets who created in the spirit of Surrealism.