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Frank Stella, Of Whales in Paint; in Teeth; in Wood; in Sheet Iron; in Stone; in Mountains; in Stars (Moby Dick Series chap. 57), 1990; copyright Sammlung Hoffmann, Berlin

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James Lee Byars, The Woman The Snake and The Silk Circle, 1984, photo by Siegfried Mayska; installation 2013/14; copyright Sammlung Hoffmann, Berlin

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Andy Warhol, Sunsets, 1972; installation 2015/16; copyright Sammlung Hoffmann, Berlin

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Pipilotti Rist, Frommer Audiovision Raum, 1996; video: Mutaflor, 1996; installation 2008/2009; copyright Sammlung Hoffmann, Berlin

As Erika and Rolf Hoffmann acquired artworks according to their personal taste and interest, their collection unites works by artists of various generations and nationalities. In the 1960s, due to the proximity of their home to Düsseldorf, the pair first encountered the ideas and works of German artists from the Group ZERO – Günther Uecker, Heinz Mack, Otto Piene. In the Mönchengladbach Museum the Hoffmanns befriended Marcel Broodthaers, James Lee Byars and Braco Dimitrijevic. In Bochum’s Gallery m they met François Morellet, Richard Serra und Arnulf Rainer, artists who would also join the collection early on.

Travel and time abroad deepened the Hoffmanns’ appreciation of American, Japanese and Chinese artists such as Bill Beckley, Frank Stella, Bruce Nauman, Mike Kelley, Fred Sandback, Roni Horn, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Nobuyoshi Araki, Hiroshi Sugimoto and Fang Lijun. The couple was also soon acquainted with strong feminist perspectives, thanks to work by Nancy Spero, Ana Mendieta, Carolee Schneemann and Yayoi Kusama. In Cologne they learned to appreciate Astrid Klein, Chris Newman, Albert Oehlen, Georg Herold and Isa Genzken, and subsequently Thomas Ruff and Wolfgang Tillmans.
Following the fall of the Iron Curtain, the Hoffmanns discovered the work of younger Polish and Russian contemporary artists such as Katarzyna Kozyra, Zuzanna Janin and Olga Chernysheva. With the 1997 move to Berlin, video and larger-scale installations have found a home in the collection, including works by Pipilotti Rist, Julian Rosefeldt & Piero Steinle, Yael Bartana or Monica Bonvicini, Ernesto Neto or Katharina Grosse.