Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Gerhard Richter: Panorama

Neue Nationalgalerie: Berlin, Germany
Sun 12 February - Sun 13 May 2012

This exhibit covers nearly five decades and coincides with the artist’s 80th birthday, Gerhard Richter: Panorama is a major retrospective exhibition that groups together significant moments of his remarkable career. Panorama includes the realist paintings based on photographs, the squeegee paintings, portraits, the landscapes and history paintings.

Gerhard Richter is a German artist and has produced a phenomenal amount of work in many mediums. He has painted both photo realistically and abstractly and at the same time produced works in glass. He also produced a body prints and photographic work. 

Richter has said that he used photographs as an escape from deciding what to paint. He collected a huge collection of images from magazines, newspapers and books which became the subject matter for these early blurred works. From this large clipping collection he created the Atlas. The Atlas is a an ongoing work comprised of about 4,000 photographs which were then grouped together on about 600 panels.

He then turned to photographs he took himself. He replicated the look of the photo and incorporated his trademark "blur" onto the canvas. Blurring creates a surreal image which Richter said he used to make everything equally important and equally unimportant. he also has said, " the blurrier the image, the more there is to see in it."

Richter constantly tried new techniques and new mediums and turned from realism to working in abstraction. In 1969 he began working in grey monotones.he began to use different paint applications to create various patterns by scraping to expose diffident layers of the paint. In the mid 80's he made his own squeegee device to scrape layers of paint off to create large bands on the canvas. Richter also created color-chart paintings such as 256 Colours, works in glass, works leaning toward minimalism, and in 2007 a glass window he designed for Cologne Cathedral was unveiled.

This exhibit shows about 140 paintings and 5 sculptures from his oeuvre. Two of his most well works can also be seen, Ema, (1966), the nude descending the stairs, and Betty (1998), her heard tuned away from the viewer.

The exhibition has been made possible by the Verein der Freunde der Nationalgalerie. 

A comprehensive catalog is due for release to accompany the exhibition.
The Film Forum in New York is also showing the Corinna Belz film, "Gerhard Richter Painting." It runs for two weeks beginning today March 15, 2012 through March 27, 2012. Belz also directed the short film, "Gerhard Richter Window," in 2007. Interview with Belz about the making of Gerhard Richter Painting."

For more information on Gerhard Richter.

His official site: Gerhard Richter

Article in ARTFORUM, February 2012, page 169, The Chance Ornament: Aphorisms on Gerhard Richter's Abstractions. This is not available online through the library but the Arts Division subscribes to this magazine.

Books the Central Library owns about Gerhard Richter:

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