Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, Minenstecher

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‘Minenstecher’ (‘Mine Searcher’) 
Oakwood sculpture, displayed at the GDK 1940 room 13 and bought by Hitler for 5.900 Reichsmark.
Height 138 cm, weight 59 kg.

— displayed at the exhibition ‘Art in the Third Reich, Seduction and Distraction’, November 2023 – March 2024, Museum Arnhem, The Netherlands —

At the end of WWII, several stolen art collections -and 43 paintings and 52 sculptures from Hitler’s private contemporary art collection- were hidden by the National Socialists in the Monastery of Hohenfurt (Vyssi Brod), near Linz in the Czech Republic. ‘Minenstecher’ by Hartmann-Wiedenbruck was one of them. 

‘Minenstecher’ by Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, displayed at the GDK 1940 room 13. 
The rifle on the back of the soldier is a Mauser K98k, the standard service rifle of the German Wehrmacht from 1935 – 1945.

Monastery of Hohenfurt (Vyssi Brod), Czech Republic
In the beginning of 1944, Dr. Hans Reger (architect in charge of the Führerbau, Munich 1938-1945) shipped in several transports 43 paintings and 52 sculptures from Hitler’s private contemporary art collection -and other stolen art collections- to the Monastery of Hohenfurt (Vyssi Brod), near Linz in the Czech Republic.
After the 1945 liberation of Czechoslovakia, valuable art, such as pieces from the Mannheimer- and Rothschild collections, were confiscated by the U.S. Army and taken to the Munich Central Collection Point in an effort to return them to their original owners. Art works then considered as having no value, like contemporary German Nazi-art works, were left behind. They were photographed in August 1945 by the former director of the Czech State Institute of Photometry, Antonín Friedl, along with the photographer Jan Tuháček. ‘Minenstecher’ by Hartmann-Wiedenbrück was one of the 52 sculptures in the Monastery of Hohenfurt in 1945. Later, the art works previously owned by Hitler, ended up scattered across the country.
Since 2012, twenty-three paintings by German artists -that Adolf Hitler personally purchased during WWII- were found back at various Czech institutions. Seven were discovered at the Zákupy Chateau, the site where items from confiscated castles, chateaus and private houses were gathered after the war. Seven other canvases were found at the convent of Premonstratensian Sisters in Doksany, near Prague. One painting was found at the Military Institute in Prague, and four works were found at the Sychrov Castle. Four other paintings were found in the building of the Faculty of Law of the Charles University in Prague.
Three larges bronzes were found back at the Aleš South Bohemian Gallery: ‘The Rower’ by Hermann Zettlitzer, ‘Aphrodite‘ by Wilhelm Wandschneider, and ‘The Sower‘ by Willi Knapp.
All the twenty-three paintings are now in the possession of the ‘Czech National Institute for the Protection and Conservation of Monuments and Sites’. They will remain in the Czech Republic.

‘Minenstecher’ by Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, photographed in the summer of 1945 in the Monastery of Hohenfurt by Dr. Antonin Friedel and Jan Tuhácek (Source: RYNES Václav: Vyssí Brod. In: Jihocech, page 1, 31 October 1945). Published in ‘Hitlerova Sbirka’, 2009, by Jiri Kuchar.

‘Minenstecher’ by Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, shown in ‘Die Deutsche Wochendschau’, 1 August 1940, nr. 517.
https://archive.org/details/1940-08-01-Die-Deutsche-Wochenschau-517

Documents from the Bundesarchiv, confirming the purchase by Hitler at the GDK 1940.

‘Mine Searcher’ by Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, displayed at the exhibition ‘Art in the Third Reich, Seduction and Distraction’, November 2023 – March 2024, Museum Arnhem, The Netherlands.

‘Mine Searcher’ by Hartmann-Wiedenbrück on German TV (ZDF/ 12 December 2023). ZDF Museum Arnhem (at 24.58 min.)

‘Mine Searcher’ by Hartmann-Wiedenbrück on Dutch TV (NOS/ 12 November 2023). NOS Museum Arnhem (at 13.07 min.)
 

‘Mine Seacher’ depicted in the exhibition catalog ‘Art in the Third Reich’ by Jelle Bouwhuis and Almar Seinen, 2023.

– condition : II  restored after WWII (slightly modified), again restored in 2023
– size : height  138 , width 59, dept  40 cm 
– signed
– type : oak, weighting 59 kilo
   

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BIOGRAPHY: BERND HARTMANN- WIEDENBRÜCK

Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, ‘LMG.-Schütze’ (‘Light Machine Gunner’), GDK 1941 room 13. Created in limewood. Size: 2,20 meter high. Bought by Hitler for 14.000 Reichsmark.
Left: ‘LMG.-Schütze’ by Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, depicted in the GDK-exhibition catalog.
Right: ‘LMG.-Schütze’ by Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, depicted in ’20 Plastiken aus der Grossen Deutschen Kunstausstellung 1941 im Haus der deutschen Kunst’, München, 1941. Same depiction published in ‘Nationalsozialistische Monatshefte’, Heft 138, 1941.
      

The original ‘LMG.-Schütze’ by Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, in the possession of the German Historical Museum, Berlin. Unrestored and heavily damaged; arm and machine-gun are missing.

Left: ‘LMG.-Schütze’, depicted in the cover of ‘Hallo Latvija‘ (‘Hello Latvia‘), 3 August 1941, edition nr. 5.
Right: ‘LMG.-Schütze’, depicted on the cover of ‘Deutsche Wochenschau’, 17 September 1941 (‘Die 220 cm hohe Lindenholzplastik LMG-Schütze von Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück’).  
  

Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, ‘Aufstürmender Grenadier’ (‘Advancing Grenadier’), GDK 1943 room 9. Bought for 18.000 Reichsmark by Landrat Otto Georg Schulze-Anné (Wartheland/ Poland).
Right: ‘Aufstürmender Grenadier’ depicted in the cover of Frauenwarte, September 1943.
 

‘Aufstürmender Grenadier’, displayed at the GDK 1943 room 9.

Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, ‘Spahtrupp’ (‘Reconnaissance Unit’), GDK 1942 room 27. Relief created in wood. Depicted in ‘Deutsche Zeitung im Ostland’, 31 July 1942, edition nr. 207.
 

Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, ‘Kriegerdenkmal in Greffen‘ (‘War Memorial in the village of Greffen‘), 1938. De text is a quote by Adolf Hiter: ‘Solange Deutsche leben, werden sie bedenken, dass dies einst Söhne ihres Volkes waren‘ (‘As long as Germans live, they will remember that these were the sons‘). Revealed at January 30, 1938.
The bronze figure was melted down in WWII, and replaced by a cement cast. In 1966 the bronze solder was recast, after a plaster model (which was a cast from the original bronze).
Laying of the foundation stone of the war memorial by Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, 21 January 1937.  

Left: Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, ‘Pflasterer’ (‘Bricklayer’), GDK 1939 room 36. Bought for 1.600 Reichsmark by the ‘Kulturamt München’. Depicted in ‘Junge Bildhauer’, 1939.
Right: Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, ‘Bildniskopf’ (‘Head’), depicted in ‘Die Deutsche Plastik der Gegenwart’, 1940.
   

Left: Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, “Bildnisbüste Kunstmaler Ehlers’ (‘Bust of painter Ehler’). Displayed at the exhibition ‘Westfalens Beitrag zur Deutschen Kunst der Gegenwart’, Haus Rothenburg, Münster, 1937. Depicted in the exhibition catalog.
Right: Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, ‘Mädchenkopf’ (‘Head of a Girl’). Depicted at the ‘Münchener Jahres Ausstellung’, Neue Pinakothek, 1937. Executed in Englisher Zement.
 

Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, ‘Mädchenkopf’ (‘Head of a Girl’), signed 1938. Bronze, height 30 cm. Likely displayed at the GDK 1939 room 26. In private possession.
   

Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbruck, ‘Elektra’, bronze. Displayed at the Grosse Berliner Kunstausstellung 1942. Depicted in ‘Die Kunst im Deutschen Reich’, 1942. 

Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück, ‘Ausschender’ (‘Watching’). Dispplayed at the exhibition ‘Ausstellung Münchener Künstler 1943’, Maximlianeum; depicted in the exhibition catalog.

Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück in his atlier in Lintel (a district of Wiedenbrück), 1962. 

Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück
Bernd Hartmann (1905 – 1972), aliases Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück and Bernd Hartmann-Lintel, was an academic sculptor and sacral artist. He belonged to the Wiedenbrücker Schule school of arts.
Hartmann came from a family of artists. His father Heinrich Hartmann (1868–1937) and his brother Hubert Hartmann (1915–2006) were also sculptors. Hartmann-Wiedenbrück studied sculpting under his father in Wiedenbrück from 1920 to 1924, and later at the Art Academie in Düsseldorf. He made study trips through Europe, to America, Norht Africa and to the Far East. First he worked in Kleve, Osnabrück and Düsseldorf. From 1927 to 1935, he studied in Munich at the Akademie der Bildende Künste under professor Bernhard Bleeker, followed by professorships in Münster and Munich. From 1937 to 1944 he lived in Munich.
In 1937 he was awarded the 1. Bildhauerpreis des Westfäl. Kunstvereins.
In 1938 Hartmann-Wiedenbrück created the ‘Kriegerdenkmal in Greffen‘ (‘War Memorial in the village of Greffen‘). The meorial beares a quote by Adolf Hiter: ‘Solange Deutsche leben, werden sie bedenken, dass dies einst Söhne ihres Volkes waren‘ (‘As long as Germans live, they will remember that these were the sons‘). The over life-size bronze soldier was melted down in WWII, and replaced by a cement cast. In 1966, the bronze solder was recast after a plaster model (which was a cast from the original bronze).

Bernd Hartmann-Wiedenbrück took part in the following exhibitions:
1932: ‘Münchener Kunstausstellung 1932’, Deutsches Museum;
1933: ‘Staatliche Kunst-Ausstellung München’;
1934: ‘Grosse Münchener Kunstausstellung’, Neue Pinakothek:
1935: ‘Grosse Münchener Kunstausstellung’, Neue Pinakothek;
1937: ‘Westfalens Beitrag zur Deutschen Kunst der Gegenwart’, Haus Rothenburg, Münster;
1937: ‘Münchener Jahres Ausstellung’, Neue Pinakothek;
1938: ‘Münchener Kunstausstellung 1938’, Maximilianeum;
1939: ‘Münchener Kunstausstellung 1939’, Maximilianeum (here he displayed a bust of Adolf Hitler);
1942: Grosse Berliner Kunstausstellung (‘Elektra’);
1940/41: Grosse Berliner Kunstausstellung (‘Mädchenkopf’);
1942: ‘Münchener Kunstausstellung 1942’, Maximilianeum;
1943: ‘Ausstellung Münchener Künstler 1943’, Maximilianeum;
1944: ‘Gau Ausstellung Westfalen -Süd, VII Grosse Sauerländsiche Ausstellung’, Hagen 1944.

From 1937 to 1944, twenty of his works were exhibited at the Great German Art Exhibitions in Munich, including ‘Minenstecher’ (‘Mine Searcher’, GDK 1940, bought by Hitler for 5.900 Reichsmark), ‘LMG.-Schütze’ (‘Light Machine Gunner’,  GDK 1941, bought by Hitler for 14.000 Reichsmark), and ‘Aufstürmender Grenadier’ (‘Advancing Grenadier’, GDK 1943, bought for 18.000 Reichsmark by Landrat Otto Georg Schulze-Anné (Wartheland/ Poland). ‘Minenstecher’ was found back in 1945 in the Czech Republic, in the Monastery of Hohenfurt (Vyssi Brod),

Monastery of Hohenfurt (Vyssi Brod), Czech Republic
In the beginning of 1944, Dr. Hans Reger (architect in charge of the Führerbau, Munich 1938-1945) shipped in several transports 43 paintings and 52 sculptures from Hitler’s private contemporary art collection -and other stolen art collections- to the Monastery of Hohenfurt (Vyssi Brod), near Linz in the Czech Republic.
After the 1945 liberation of Czechoslovakia, valuable art, such as pieces from the Mannheimer- and Rothschild collections, were confiscated by the U.S. Army and taken to the Munich Central Collection Point in an effort to return them to their original owners. Art works then considered as having no value, like contemporary German Nazi-art works, were left behind. They were photographed in August 1945 by the former director of the Czech State Institute of Photometry, Antonín Friedl, along with the photographer Jan Tuháček. ‘Minenstecher’ by Hartmann-Wiedenbrück was one of the 52 sculptures in the Monastery of Hohenfurt in 1945. Later, the art works previously owned by Hitler, ended up scattered across the country.
Since 2012, twenty-three paintings by German artists -that Adolf Hitler personally purchased during WWII- were found at various Czech institutions. Seven were discovered at the Zákupy Chateau, the site where items from confiscated castles, chateaus and private houses were gathered after the war. Seven other canvases were found at the convent of Premonstratensian Sisters in Doksany, near Prague. One painting was found at the Military Institute in Prague, and four works were found at the Sychrov Castle. Four other paintings were found in the building of the Faculty of Law of the Charles University in Prague.
Three larges bronzes were found at the Aleš South Bohemian Gallery: ‘The Rower’ by Hermann Zettlitzer, ‘Aphrodite‘ by Wilhelm Wandschneider, and ‘The Sower‘ by Willi Knapp.
All the twenty-three paintings are now in the possession of the ‘Czech National Institute for the Protection and Conservation of Monuments and Sites’. They will remain in the Czech Republic.

In 1944 Hartmann-Wiedenbrück’s atelier in Munich was bombed. He was taken prisoner of war in 1945 and in 1946 he moved back to Wiedenbrück where he predominantly produced religious art. He chanched his name into Hartmann-Lintel and took part at several international exhibitions.  In 1956, he married the artist Ima Rochelle. Together with his wife he created the chantry-chapell of the Church of the Redeemer in Nazareth. 
Bernd Hartmann died in 1972.
In Rheda-Wiedenbrück, the street where he lived is named after him. Works by Hartmann-Wiedenbrück can be seen in the Wiedenbrücker Schule Museum. Several of his (public) works are located in the city of Wiedenbrück.