The collection consists of largely German Expressionist paintings and graphics, purchased by the founder of the museum, Lothar-Günther Buchheim. He afforded the works thanks to the Nazi decree that expressionists art is ‘degenerate’. It is a rich collection including Beckmann, Braque, Cirinth, Kirchner, Dix, and Jawlensky, to name but a few.
The location was carefully considered when the museum was being planned and Lake Starnberg was selected for its natural beauty. There is a marina where you can rent a boat to sail the lake, and do water sports (It is closed in the winter). The building was completed in 1996 to the designs of Behnisch Architekten GbR.
The display is interwoven with Buchheim’s other interests including Bavarian folk art, African artefacts and a bizarre (if not slightly surreal) collection of papier mache life-size figures and circus objects. The playful side of the collection is reflected in a programme of changing exhibitions.