Georg Schrimpf (13 February 1889 – 19 April 1938) was a German painter and graphic artist. Along with Otto Dix, George Grosz and Christian Schad, Schrimpf is broadly acknowledged as a main representative of the art trend Neue Sachlichkeit (usually translated New Objectivity), which developed in the 1920s as a counter-movement to Expressionism and Abstraction. Schrimpf was listed as a producer of Degenerate Art by the German National Socialist government in the 1930s.
Schrimpf was born in Munich, his father having died before Schrimpf's birth. His stepfather later forced him to leave home. In 1902 he apprenticed as a baker in Passau. From 1905 to 1914 Schrimpf wandered through Belgium, France, Switzerland and Northern Italy, working as a waiter, baker, and coal shuffler. In 1913 he lived in an anarchist colony in Switzerland, where he formed a friendship with Oskar Maria Graf, also a baker, but later a famous novelist.
With the outbreak of the First World War, the antimilitaristic Schrimpf "successfully employed every possible trick to avoid military service; in so doing, however, he ruined his health". From 1915–1918 Schrimpf lived in Berlin, where he worked as a freelance artist. In his free time he used every minute for drawing, painting, and wood carving. Mostly self-taught as an artist, he learned by copying the Old Masters.
In 1916 the famous publicist and art expert Herwarth Walden exhibited some of Schrimpf's paintings and woodcarvings in his Sturm Gallery and they received much public attention. At this time and in this gallery Schrimpf met the painter Maria Uhden. The two married in 1917 but she died the following year.
In 1925 Schrimpf participated in the Neue Sachlichkeit exhibition at the Mannheim Kunsthalle. Two years later, he began teaching at the Meisterschule für Dekorationskunst in Munich. Unlike many artists of the New Objectivity movement, Schrimpf was not immediately persecuted when the Nazis took power in 1933, as his work was seen as an acceptable form of German Romanticism by the authorities. He became professor at an art academy in Berlin in 1933, but was fired in 1937 because of his “red past”. He had been a short time member of Rote Hilfe, a socialist organization. For the same reason the Nazi regime banned his works from public exhibitions. Schrimpf died in Berlin on 19 April 1938.
1995 Deutsche Bundespost honored Schrimpf with the issue of special stamp featuring his 1928 painting Still Life With Cat.
- Schmeid 1978, p. 129.
- Michalski 1994, p. 74.
- Michalski 1994, p. 218.
- Michalski 1994, p. 79.
- Michalski, Sergiusz (1994). New Objectivity. Cologne: Benedikt Taschen. ISBN 3-8228-9650-0
- Schmied, Wieland (1978). Neue Sachlichkeit and German Realism of the Twenties. London: Arts Council of Great Britain. ISBN 0-7287-0184-7
- "Georg Schrimpf". Ten Dreams. Retrieved 20 January 2013. Six of Shrimpf's paintings (by a non-profit organization)