Together with Ernst Barlach and Käthe Kollwitz, Wilhelm Lehmbruck is one of the most important German sculptors of the early 20th century.
Fortunate circumstances led the son of a miner to an arts and crafts school and finally to the Düsseldorf Art Academy in 1901, where he became a master-class student of Karl Janssen.
In 1904, the first major Rodin exhibition in Germany left a lasting impression on the student. His artistic environment had a decisive influence on Lehmbruck's development. In Paris in 1910, he met Matisse, Archipenko, Brancusi and Modigliani, who encouraged his path towards expressionist sculpture.