|German artist Gerhard Richter opens largest exhibition at the Pompidou Center in Paris |
German artist Gerhard Richter poses on the eve of the opening of his exhibition "Gerhard Richter: Panorama", at the Centre Pompidou, Monday, June 04, 2012. AP Photo/Thibault Camus.
By: Thomas Adamson, Associated Press
PARIS.- Gerhard Richter, one of the world's top-selling living artists, launched his largest exhibit to date in Paris on Monday a show spanning six decades of a diverse and storied career.
"Panorama," which opens to the public on Wednesday, sprawls the entire sixth floor of the Pompidou Center; it features some 141 paintings in 10 rooms that start from the geometric abstract pieces from the 1960s right up to the digital printing that ends in 2011.
But for an artist whose 2011 auction sales totaled $200 million, according to auction tracker Artnet, what can Paris give him that he's not already got? For the German-born artist, it's all down to the space.
Though a reduced version of the exhibit has already been seen in London and Berlin, works added from French national archives make this the largest display in the painter's history.
Richter said the Pompidou was uniquely ideal thanks to its "very generous space."
Though Richter is normally uncomfortable around journalists he stormed out of a press conference last year in London he opened up to the press Monday in at the Pompidou Center, joking that despite money and fame, "No!" he does not consider himself a rock star.
To understand the exhibit's title, look no further that the central glass sculpture entitled "6 Standing Panes," which serves as a looking-glass onto the landmark building's bird's eye view of Paris.
"This panorama it has a completely new dimension!" said one viewer, Marie Tremoulet.
Richter started out as Europe's answer to American Pop Art, commenting on his continent's consumer culture.
Equally however, Richter who lived through World War II was known for his attacks on Germany's Nazi past: from photographs of aerial invasions in 1964 to the disturbing 2000 work "Uncle Rudi," in which he dresses his uncle up in Nazi uniform.
The dark atmosphere is also present in his many portraits, including a picture of his mentally fragile aunt Marianne showing her with Richter as a child, before she was killed by Germans.
His gray period is equally gloomy, represented as a series of eight monochrome tableaux.
"Gray is the color ... the most important of all ... absent of opinion, nothing, neither/nor," Richter said with signature cynicism.
He was said to have painted these works in a period of personal and professional uncertainty and unhappiness.
In stark contrast to this is the series entitled "Releasing Abstraction," in which Richter's glum imagery gives way to bursts of color in the form of large, bright canvas works from the 1980s.
"Glenn" and "June" both works taken from French archives feature vivid reds, blues and yellows painted in different layers and at different times. Richter calls it "a highly planned kind of spontaneity."
Clearly savoring the momentary positivity, curator Camille Morineau called it her favorite part of the collection: "It's a real explosion of joy. He was happy when he painted them."
Another source of joy for Richter was fatherhood.
Intimate works such as "S. with Child" based on his wife with their newborn child seem even more striking in their contrast with the glass and digital works, which distance the spectator from the artist in their neutrality.
"I have painted my family so frequently because they are the one who really affect me the most," said Richter.
Despite links to his family and the past, Richter remains thoroughly engaged in the world around him.
His final work, "Strips" from 2011, which caps the exhibit, explores how traditional painting can be reconciled with the rise of digital culture.
Richter celebrated his 80th birthday in February but with more projects in the pipeline, it seems he has no intention of letting age slow him down.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.
June 5, 2012
German artist Gerhard Richter opens largest exhibition at the Pompidou Center in Paris
Getty Museum presents Drama and Devotion: Heemskerck's 'Ecce Homo' Altarpiece from Warsaw
Ellsworth Kelly's drawings of plants, flowers, leaves, spanning 60 years, on view at Metropolitan Museum
Jean-Michel Basquiat's Untitled, 1981 poised to achieve the highest price for the artist
Sotheby's to offer a selection of rare and important furniture and decorative arts of noble provenance
Annual summer display at the Morgan Library to include Noah Webster's dictionary
Jan David Winitz discusses how to look at and to learn about antique oriental rugs
Mystically Nordic: Akseli Gallen-Kallela, Finland, and the Modernist Spirit on view at Museum Kunstpalast
Recent paintings and sculptures by Shirazeh Houshiary on view at Lisson Gallery in Milan
Israel Museum's Suzanne Landau appointed Director and Chief Curator at Tel Aviv Museum of Art
Iconic 'napalm girl' photo taken by the Associated Press' Huynh Cong "Nick" Ut turns 40
Only known document signed by Lewis and Clark in private hands may fetch $100,000+ at Heritage
Legendary art dealer and collector Michael Werner makes major gift of 130 works to Paris
Exhibition of the work by Jeremy Deller opens at Wiels Centre for Contemporary Art
Works by renowned contemporary native artists at the National Museum of the American Indian in New York
David Jablonowski opens his first solo exhibition at Galerie Fons Welters in Amsterdam
Rubin Museum of Art announces new leadership appointments
Opening season at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia generates record-breaking attendance figures
Amistad Center for Art & Culture highlights collection and commemorates African American culture
Most Popular Last Seven Days
1.- Susan Silas' "Love in the ruins: Sex over 50" opens at STUDIO10 in Brooklyn
2.- Mexican archaeologists find a 1,500 year old shaft tomb in the state of Colima
3.- The British Museum presents its first major exhibition on Vikings in over 30 years
4.- First major monographic exhibition on Paul Gauguin ever presented at MoMA opens
5.- Major exhibition dedicated to the lifework of Emil Nolde opens at Stadel Museum
6.- Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam announces acquisition of two works by Steve McQueen
7.- Paris fashion goes shopping at the Chanel supermarket with fully-stocked aisles and check-outs
8.- "Craft in America: Industry: Handmade in the Creative Economy" to premiere on PBS in May
9.- Six major art institutions across the United States acquire seminal Robert Rauschenberg works
10.- Art Institute of Chicago presentation showcases the art and science of Renoir painting
Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .
|Royalville Communications, Inc|