Käthe Kollwitz / March of the Weavers
One of her key works, the cycle Weavers (1894−1897) —— inspired by a play by Gerhard Hauptmann about an unsuccessful revolt by Silesian weavers in 1842 —— in which she eloquently expresses the suffering, hopes, courage and eventual failure. During the years 1902−1908 she created the cycle Peasant War. Her etching entitled After the Battle, in which a mother looks for her son among the dead by night, would be chillingly prophetic of her own future —— her son Peter was killed in October 1914. In memory of her son and the other fallen she created the sculpture Mourning Parents that became a timeless concept for war memorials. In the years 1922−1923 she reacted to her wartime experience with several cycles that dealt with the death of the volunteers and the fate of the mothers and widows. When Adolf Hitler came to power she was forced to leave the Academy and her works were removed from museums and galleries.