Castle Villa Ludwigshöhe

„Villa Ludwigshöhe“
© BSA, Koblenz

King Ludwig I of Bavaria
King Ludwig I of Bavaria

Museum gallery: Max Slevogt-Galerie, Schloss “Villa Ludwigshöhe”

In 1975 the state of Rhineland-Palatinate acquired the Schloss "Villa Ludwigshöhe" by means of the Wittelsbach Compensation Fund.
The Bavarian King, Ludwig I (1786-1868), had this built from 1847 to 1852 according to plans of his architect, Friedrich von Gärtner, as his summer residence near Edenkoben. Since 1980 the building, with its Pompeian-style frescoes, has been renovated and part of the upper floor houses the Max Slevogt-Galerie. The majority of the collection consists of paintings from the estate of the painter Max Slevogt (1868-1932) who was born in Bavaria. The exhibited paintings stem mainly from the artist’s early work and the collection also includes important works which the painter never wanted to sell during his lifetime. With targeted purchases, partly from the gallery’s own budget and partly from gifts and donations or exhibits on permanent loan, the collection has been expanded to include works from all the artist’s different creative periods. Alongside the portraits from the artist’s estate, visitors are now also able to view the landscapes and still life paintings.

Slevogt lived in Berlin since 1901 where he belonged, together with Max Liebermann and Lovis Corinth, to the "Triumvirate" of German Impressionism and to the avant garde of German art. He had contacts to the international art scene and, with his summer stays near Landau, he took the cosmopolitan way of living and thinking to the most south-western corner of the Palatinate region.
The French Impressionists celebrated Paris and the Seine as “world landscapes” in their paintings and made these the embodiment of the bourgeois attitude to life at the end of the 19th century. Inspired by this, Slevogt, like his Berlin colleague Max Liebermann, searched for a landscape which corresponded to his own temperament. He painted the Palatinate region with its gentle vine slopes and forests and was one of the first to convey the Mediterranean aura and the southern colour of this region to a wide audience.

Max Slevogt: Summer morning (Woman with parasol), 1901

Max Slevogt
Summer morning (Woman with parasol), 1901

The "Villa Ludwigshöhe" shows exhibitions on Slevogt’s work and also on the Wittelsbach dynasty and their castle, several times a year. The exceptionally beautifully located building with the gallery dedicated to Max Slevogt has, with this, become one of the most interesting cultural attractions in the Southern Palatinate region.
A further highlight is Slevogt’s Hof (court) in Neukastel near Leinsweiler in the Palatinate region, not far from Edenkoben, where the artist portrayed his favourite works from literature and music in imposing wall and ceiling frescoes. Slevogt’s library, which was also acquired by the state of Rhineland Palatinate, as well as the painter’s original furniture, is also still here. Those who look for the artist’s burial place, tucked away in the nearby wood, can be sure that they will remain captivated by this artist and the landscape which he glorified for ever.