Erich Kuhn

Biographical information

RolesCompeted in Olympic Games
Full nameErich Albrecht Paul Christian•Kuhn
Used nameErich•Kuhn
Born31 July 1890 in Berlin, Berlin (GER)
Died12 February 1967 in Frankfurt am Main, Hessen (GER)
NOC Germany


German sculptor and painter Erich Kuhn was married to pianist Lisa Kuhn. Their daughter Beate later became one of the most impressive ceramic artists in Germany. Kuhn first graduated as a school teacher for art, studying under Max Liebermann and Lovis Corinth. Subsequently, Kuhn studied engraving and etching at the Academy of Fine Arts in Berlin before he served as a volunteer in World War I. In 1918 he settled in the Black Forest and started sculpturing as an autodidact. After extensive travelling to various places in Italy, he moved to Düsseldorf in 1926, started teaching at the local art academy and worked as a sculptor. In 1932 he toured the Dutch East Indies.

Although some of his works were classified as “entartet” (degenerate) in 1937, he was commissioned to produce several large scale steel relief and sculptures for industrial buildings in Germany and allowed to take part in various exhibitions. During World War II the family’s home in Düsseldorf was bombed out and they moved to Hinterzarten / Black Forest. After World War II he taught at the School of Applied Arts in Wiesbaden from 1949-55. In 1967, Erich Kuhn was fatally injured, when his car broke down on the highway and he was going to set up a warning triangle. Unfortunately, a following motorist did not see him and ran over him.

Kuhn worked mainly in wood and stone and created numerous nudes and portraits. Two notable works are an ornate table, presented to Adolf Hitler in 1939 by steel industrialist Alfried Krupp von Bohlen und Halbach, and the stone relief History of Swimming produced in the mid-1960s for the Rheinbad, Düsseldorf, at that time the largest swimming pool in Europe. The relief Skating was probably created in 1935 for the ice rink in Dusseldorf. It was made of stainless Krupp steel. The ice stadium was destroyed in World War II.


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1936 Summer Olympics Art Competitions GER Erich Kuhn
Sculpturing, Reliefs, Open (Olympic) AC

Special Notes