The Alpine Retreat

Adrian Ghenie Romanian

Not on view

Here, the artist pictures the terrace of Adolf Hitler’s Berghof, the mountain retreat in the Obersalzberg, Germany. Against a rapturous view of the Bavarian terrain, Hitler’s mistress (and, briefly, wife) Eva Braun (1912–1945) reclines on a chaise longue with one of her beloved Scotties at her feet, her face a sweep of meaty brushstrokes. Her disfigured visage speaks to the decadence of her tenure at the lodge and her complicity with, if not explicit knowledge of, the horrors undertaken by the Nazis. Ghenie’s interest in historical trauma is deeply tied to his experience growing up in Romania. He was twelve in December 1989, when dictator Nicolae Ceaușescu and his wife, Elena, were tried and executed, ending a long and brutal regime.

The Alpine Retreat, Adrian Ghenie (Romanian, born Baia Mare, 1977), Oil on canvas

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