zenbro: Robin rescuing Batman (Default)
[personal profile] zenbro
I came across a description of Gerhard Richter's (b. 1932, Dresden) painting as a kind of "controlled frenzy," and of course I was immediately intrigued. After some online research, I've decided I rather like him. He started as a Pop surrealist from the 1960s onward, painting from photographs and then altering or blurring them slightly as he moved them onto the canvas. I think a clue to his mental process is here:

"I cannot describe anything more clearly about reality than my own relation to reality, and this has always to do with haziness, insecurity, inconsistency, fragmentary performance."

I can dig it...

I like his current work, too. He appears to literally drag the paint across the canvas. David Frankel, writing in the February 1999 issue of ArtForum, says:

"The palette can be violent, as when high-pitched reds, greens, and blues jump and jangle; or it can be delicate, where, say, a sheet of smoky purple mantles veil-like complementaries. Sometimes a hard outline shows where the oil pulled apart as it was spread, baring the coat underneath. More often colors mingle and fuse, striated drifts scraped too thin to hide their neighbors."

His skills as a colorist appeal to me. Nobody takes colorists seriously these days, and that's too bad.

The overall effect is kind of disturbing, but also thrilling, like a splash of ice water in one's face.

If I had to choose one (or two) pieces for myself today, they would be:

Seascape (852-2), 1998. Evidently copied from a photograph, then altered to his surealist mode. You get this funny feeling something is going to rise out of the water and it probably won't be very nice.

Abstraktes Bild, (rot) 743-4, 1991. This is primarily red and black, simultaneously chilling and seductive.

i found both of these at:


zenbro: Robin rescuing Batman (Default)

February 2011

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