German painter Max Beckmann’s masterpiece, The Mill, is an allegorical painting created in 1947. It belongs to the triptych format, inspired by religious paintings but with a modernist twist. The Mill depicts various characters in a bleak and industrialized landscape dominated by a giant mill. Beckmann was associated with Expressionism and New Objectivity movement and is known for his complex autobiographical allegories featuring actors, heroes, cabaret singers, and thugs.
The Nazis classified Beckmann’s work as degenerate art in 1937, forcing him to flee Germany and settle in the Netherlands. Despite this setback, he continued sculpting complex portraits on mythological subjects that were both elusive and multidimensional in their meaning.
In 1995, The Museum of Modern Art organized an exhibition dedicated solely to Max Beckmann’s graphic works. This comprehensive collection showcased lithographs, drypoints, and woodcuts forged over several years of intense creativity spread across a career spanning over three decades.