A Tragic Love Affair: Oskar Kokoschka and Alma Mahler

Exhibition Website

Nov 12 2016 - Apr 16 2017

Oskar Kokoschka (Austrian, 1886 – 1980) first met Alma Mahler, the widow of composer Gustav Mahler, in Vienna in April 1912. He was not the first man enthralled by Alma Mahler, who played the muse for several artists across disciplines. This season we are exploring her role as a muse in both music and art. 

This exhibition will look at Kokoschka’s various depictions of their tumultuous relationship, in which he often placed images of Mahler in allegorical context. After Mahler left him, Kokoschka was so distraught that he commissioned the Munich doll maker Hermine Moos to create a life-size doll after Alma’s likeness in July 1918. The doll was designed according to Kokoschka’s own descriptions. Although the result was a bitter disappointment to him, he used this fetish doll in several paintings and drawings.

Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website.

  • Painting
  • European
  • 20th Century
  • Modernism
  • Oskar Kokoschka

Exhibition Venues & Dates