July 12, 2014 in Rome, Italy:
Franz Marc was born 1880 as son of a professional landscape painter. Age 20 he entered the Academy of Fine arts in Munich. Twice he spent time in France, in particular in Paris, where he was a frequent visitor of museums and galleries. He mingled with other artists and became an aficionado of the Dutch painter van Gogh. He also traveled with his older brother, a Byzantine expert, through Greece. In 1911 Marc founded Der Blaue Reiter, a journal which became the center of one of the most important artist circles of German Expressionism with members like the Russian painter Kandinsky. Marc went on to befriend the French artist Delaunay, who sparked his interest in Cubism and Futurism. With the outbreak of the Great War Marc enlisted in the German Army. He was proud of his tarpaulin covers in pointelistic styles varying from Manet to Kandinsky, suspecting that the later was the most effective in order to camouflage artillery from aerial observation. In 1916 he was killed by a bullet to the head in the battle of Verdun. All the talent, all the art that was still in him – it was gone from one moment to the other.
He is just one example of many. Fernand Leger, Oskar Kokoschka, Wydham Lewis, Harvey Dunn, Maurice Ravel, Carl Orff – I could go on and on with the list of those, who exchanged brushes, pens and paper with guns. And then all of those, whose name we don’t remember because their talents and potentials stayed unexplored. Isn’t the thought that we might lose at this very moment the one capable of the idea to solve our energy problems, the one with the potential to cure all kinds of cancer, MS, or to prevent Alzheimer’s, a colorful storyteller like Chagall, a genius, who shapes a butt like David’s due to a bullet – isn’t it very sobering? One war to end them all – not one of our most brilliant moments.