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Self Portrait 1946
Self Portrait1943

Johannes Matthaeus Koelz 

1895  - 1971

Soldier - Artist - Poet - Anti Nazi

A Life Divided : A Retrospective Exhibition
by Ava Farrington and Leicester City Museums Service at the New Walk Museum Leicester 
8th March - 7th October 2001 [Tel +44 (0)116 255 4100]
31,000 visitors saw this exhibition.

Pieces of the tryptch at New Walk Museum and top left Self Portrait 1946 Copyright©Leicester City Museums

Pieces of the Triptych Leics Museum
undergoing restoration at New Walk Museum Leicester
Recent Press Coverage

Mattheus Koelz Triptych Thou Shalt not Kill left hand panel
 ---------------------------------©Copyright Ava Farrington-------------------------------
The three panels of  giant Triptych Thou Shalt Not Kill by Matthaeus Koelz (1895-1971)
(8ft x 24ft, 2.4m x 7.3m) 
In this this tryptich  Koelz depicts members of his family as well as more generalised figures, in particular soldiers and clerics. He worked on the triptych from 1930 until 1937 when he was informed that  he faced imminent arrest for pacifist propaganda. He was forced to stage a daring escape from Munich, Germany across mountainous border country into Austria and then on to Prague, on a journey which brought him to England in 1939. He was interned as an enemy alien in 1940 and sent to Hay Camp Australia on the troopship Dunera. Subsequently he was allowed to return to England and enlisted in the Pioneer Corps. Just before escaping from Germany, in the certain knowledge that his masterpiece would be destroyed if seized by the Nazis, Koelz asked a friend to cut the tripych up into several pieces. These were secretly handed to trusted friends and relatives for safekeeping. After years of patient and diligent searching some of the pieces have re-emerged  and are currently on exhibition at the New Walk Museum, Leicester, England.

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Page Version History : Version 1 10 March  2001, updated February 6th  2002, corrected Nov 5th 2005 to remove foreign javascript inserted by a.n.other

---------------------------------©Copyright Ava Farrington 2001 -------------------------------

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