Hildegard Anna Augusta Elizabeth Freiin Rebay von Ehrenwiesen, Baroness Hilla von Rebay, or simply Hilla Rebay , was an abstract artist in the early 20th century and co-founder and first director of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. She was a key figure in advising Solomon R. Guggenheim to collect non-objective art, a collection that would later form the basis of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum collection, and she was also influential in selecting Frank Lloyd Wright to design the current Guggenheim museum, which is now known as a modernist icon in New York City.
Hilla von Rebay was born into a German aristocratic family in Strasbourg, Alsace-Lorraine, then part of the German Empire. She was the second child of Antonie and Baron Franz Josef Rebay von Ehrenwiesen, an officer in the Prussian army. She showed an early aptitude for art and she studied at the Cologne Kunstgewerbeschule during the academic year 1908/09. She then attended the Académie Julian in Paris from 1909 until 1910, where she received traditional training in landscape, portraiture, genre and history painting. Under the influence of the German Jugendstil painter Fritz Erler, Rebay moved to Munich in 1910 where she lived until 1911. Here, she began to develop her interest in modern art.
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