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Last Danse Macabre 1809, 1921

Leopold Museum,
Oil on canvas
128.8×152.5 cm


  • Albin Egger-Lienz

    (Stribach near Lienz 1868–1926 Zwölfmagreien/Bolzano)

Currently on display at EG
During World War I, patriotism fed on losses as well—or indeed above all. Many believed that initiating negotiations would have made the sacrifices seem superfluous and would in fact have been a betrayal of the fallen. And so they continued fighting, allowing the World War I to become a human catastrophe. Albin Egger-Lienz (1868–1926) alternated between patriotic enthusiasm and radical opposition to the war. After the war ended, he created pictures that were expressive indictments of the war, including the fourth version of his Danse Macabre. The procession of peasants led by Death becomes a monumental symbol of mortality. While the last in line looks back wistfully, the others seem to follow Death more or less submissively, as if they were already doomed. In this painting, the themes of Egger-Lienz’s life converge. His works always revolved around questions of becoming and passing away, of this world and the hereafter, and of resignation to one’s fate in the circle of life.

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Object data

  • Albin Egger-Lienz
Last Danse Macabre 1809
Art movement
Oil on canvas
128.8×152.5 cm
Signed and dated lower right: Egger Lienz 1921
Credit line
Private collection
Selection of Reference works
  • Wien 1900. Aufbruch in die Moderne, hrsg. von Hans-Peter Wipplinger, Wien 2019 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, ab 15.03.2019).
  • Albin Egger-Lienz: 1868-1926, hrsg. von Gert Ammann/Michael Fuhr, Wien 2008 (Ausst.-Kat. Leopold Museum, Wien, 15.02.2008–29.05.2008).
  • Wilfried Kirschl: Albin Egger-Lienz: 1868-1926; das Gesamtwerk; [Monographie in zwei Bänden], Wien 1996.
Catalogue raisonne
  • Kirschl 1996: M 519

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Provenance research
Leopold Museum i

Nachlass Albin Egger-Lienz, St. Justina bei Bozen, Italien (1926);
Laura Egger-Lienz, Wien (1926-1930);
Privatbesitz, Steyr (ab 1930); (1)
Dr. Rudolf Leopold, Wien (o.D. - 2010)

  1. Wilfried Kirschl, Albin Egger-Lienz: 1868-1926. Das Gesamtwerk, Wien 1996, S. 561, M 519

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