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In Berlin, Pollock on Paper

Sunday, January 16, 2005; Page P04

WHAT: "No Limits, Just Edges: Jackson Pollock -- Paintings on Paper" at the Berlin Guggenheim.

WHEN: Jan. 29-April 10.

(Untitled, C. 1946, Jackson Pollock. - ) Pollock-Krasner Foundation/VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn 2004)

ADMISSION: About $5.40 (free on Mondays).

WHY GO: The show, which assembles about 40 works from private collections and institutions, is the first in 25 years to focus on Pollock's prolific works on paper, which he often exhibited side by side with his larger canvas creations.

Spanning the gamut of his career -- from his training with regionalist master Thomas Hart Benton to his break with representative art and turn toward abstract expressionism -- the exhibition charts the stylistic development of one of the 20th century's most important artists.

DON'T MISS . . . the "all-over" abstract works, notably " Untitled (Green Silver)" (circa 1949), that incorporate patterns of enamel paint on full sheets of paper, exemplifying the late "Jack the Dripper" period for which Pollock is best known.

Other important pieces include Pollock's early sketchbooks, which show the influence of Old Master paintings and Mexican muralists, and "The Debutante" (circa 1946), a rare foray into collage.

A number of key transitional drawings reveal the influence of Picasso, Jungian symbolism and surrealism.

EXTRAS: As one of the world's cultural capitals, Berlin has a bevy of top museums for aficionados of modern art.

One of the best is the Neue Nationalgalerie (Potsdamer Strasse 50, 011-49-30-266-2651, www.smb.spk-berlin.de/nng/s.html). Housed in a building designed by Bauhaus pioneer Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, the museum has an excellent array of 19th- and 20th-century painting -- including works by Edvard Munch, Joan Miro, Otto Dix and Max Beckmann.

The Berggruen Museum (Schlosstrasse 1, across from Charlottenburg Palace in the Western Stuler Building, 011-49-30-3269-5815, www.smb.spk-berlin.de/smb/en/sammlungen/details.php?objectId=22) is a showcase for the private holdings of the highly successful antiques dealer Heinz Berggruen, notably dozens of works by Picasso, a major influence on Pollock. Works by Gauguin, Klee, Matisse and Cezanne are also represented.

EATS/SLEEPS: The Grand Hyatt (Marlene-Dietrich-Platz 2, 011-49-30-2553-1234, berlin.grand.hyatt.com) has a "Grand Art in Berlin" program (also called the Design Package) starting from around $320 per night for a single room and $380 for a double. The deal includes lodging, breakfast and one of three art-themed guided tours: "Gallery Hopping" (a sampling of the city's hippest contemporary galleries); "Top Exhibition in Berlin" (a visit to a much-talked-about temporary show); or "Fit for the Museum" (a tour of historical and Old Master paintings in one of the city's venerable museums).

PACKAGES TO BERLIN: Through Feb. 28, Nordique Tours (800-995-7997, www.nordiquetours.com) is offering a six-day, four-night Berlin deal starting from $543 for solo travelers and $888 for pairs (plus departure taxes). Wednesday and Thursday departures only.

Another option is the six-day, four-night "Classic Berlin" package, offered by General Tours (800-221-2216, www.generaltours.com). It's available in February at a discount rate of $929 for solo travelers, $1,858 for couples (plus departure taxes).

Both packages include hotel and airfare from New York; departures from D.C. are extra.

INFO: Berlin Guggenheim, Unter den Linden 13/15, 011-49-30-2020-930, www.deutsche-guggenheim.de.

-- Seth Sherwood

© 2005 The Washington Post Company


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