The year 2019 brought a sensational discovery: hundreds of drawings by Franz Kafka were made accessible that for decades had been kept under lock and key. Until now, only a few of his drawings were known. Although Kafka is renowned for his written work, his drawings are evidence of what his literary executor Max Brod termed his “double talent.” Irresistible and full of fascinating figures, shifting from the realistic to the fantastic, the grotesque, the uncanny, and the carnivalesque, they illuminate a previously unknown side of the quintessential modernist author. Three fascinating stories have to be told in relation to Kafka’s drawings: the story of their transmission, the story of Kafka as a draftsmen, and the story of his drawing in the context of his writing: How are these drawings to be understood in their own right? And yet are they also connected to his writing?

This event took place on 1 June 2022.