An art collective, the group took its name from Herr Haagen, the landlord of an inn at which artists often met for informal discussion. Its most prominent members early on were Heinrich Lefler and Joseph Urban, who originally had worked and exhibited within the conservative Vienna K??nstlerhaus, but now, like the Vienna Secession*, rebelled against the establishment and formed their own organization. The Hagenbund lived for almost a decade of its life in the shadow of the popular and successful Secession, and only in the years that followed the damaging resignation of the Klimpt Group from the Secession did its members succeed in developing a more moderate, independent line, in which atmosphere played a major role. After 1918, the formal language of the Hagenbund came to dominate artistic activity in Vienna, and in the 1920s it provided the most important focus for new artistic currents. Among its members during this period were Oskar Laske, Anton Hanak, Carry Hauser, George Merkel, Sergius Pauser, Otto Rudolf Schatz, Albin Egger-Lienz and Oskar Kokoschka. They disassociated themselves from both the Secession and Expressionism on essential questions of esthetics. They may have approved of the Expressionists??? search for Realism, but the expressive formal solutions they found conflicted with the Hagenbund???s own artistic objectives. Source: Richard Rhoda Fine Art.

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