22 Facts About Arno Breker


Arno Breker was a German architect and sculptor who is best known for his public works in Nazi Germany, where they were endorsed by the authorities as the antithesis of degenerate art.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,033

Arno Breker was made official state sculptor, and exempted from military service.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,034

Arno Breker began to study architecture, along with stone-carving and anatomy.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,035

Arno Breker first visited Paris in 1924, shortly before finishing his studies.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,036

Arno Breker was quickly accepted by the art dealer Alfred Flechtheim.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,037

Arno Breker established close relationships with important figures in the art world, including Charles Despiau, Isamu Noguchi, Maurice de Vlaminck and Andre Dunoyer de Segonzac, all of whom he later portrayed.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,038

Arno Breker travelled to North Africa, producing lithographs which he published under the title "Tunisian Journey".

FactSnippet No. 2,031,039

Arno Breker visited Aristide Maillol, who was later to describe Breker as "Germany's Michelangelo".

FactSnippet No. 2,031,040

However, Arno Breker was supported by many Nazi leaders, especially Adolf Hitler.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,041

Arno Breker took commissions from the Nazis from 1933 through 1942, for example participating in a show of his work in occupied Paris in 1942, where he met Jean Cocteau, who appreciated his work.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,042

Arno Breker maintained personal relationships with Albert Speer and with Hitler.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,043

Arno Breker was on a list of 378 "Gottbegnadeten" artists exempted from wartime military duty by Hitler and chief propagandist Joseph Goebbels.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,044

Until the fall of the Third Reich, Arno Breker was a professor of visual arts in Berlin.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,045

In 1946, Arno Breker was offered a commission by Soviet leader Joseph Stalin, but he refused, saying "One dictatorship is sufficient for me".

FactSnippet No. 2,031,046

In 1948 Arno Breker was designated as a "fellow traveller" of the Nazis and fired, despite which he continued to thrive professionally.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,047

Arno Breker returned to Dusseldorf, now in the new West Germany, which remained his base, with periods of residence in Paris.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,048

Arno Breker's rehabilitation continued, culminating in the creation of a Arno Breker museum, funded by the Bodenstein family, who set aside Schloss Norvenich for the purpose.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,049

The Arno Breker Museum was inaugurated in 1985, and still open in 2021.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,050

Arno Breker's rehabilitation led to backlashes from anti-Nazi activists, including controversy in Paris when some of his works were exhibited at the Centre Georges Pompidou in 1981.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,051

Arno Breker's admirers insisted that he had never been a supporter of Nazi ideology, but had simply accepted their patronage.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,052

Arno Breker's last major work was a monumental sculpture of Alexander the Great intended to be located in Greece.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,053

Arno Breker's first wife, Demetra Messala, was a Greek model.

FactSnippet No. 2,031,054