Here, for the first time, a wide-ranging museum exhibition of works by Gerhard Richter will concentrate solely on the abstract paintings he has produced since the mid-1970s, and that constitute the most striking body of work in his oeuvre. Beginning with paintings such as “Courbet” (1986) or “Blau” (1988), which are charged with the utmost of colour, his development to the present will be charted via the series entitled “Bach” (1992) to the twelve “Wald” (2005) paintings, which will be shown for the first time in Europe. These at times very large works are created in a very complex manner. The paint structures are applied with brushes, squeegees und palette knifes that are drawn across the wet layers of paint, so that new strata are superimposed on existing ones, or even obliterate them.
The around 40 paintings were done between 1986 and 2006 and evince an immense painterly intensity. They are the result of a “highly planned spontaneity”. Although Richter’s approach using “chance, arbitrariness, whim and destruction brings about a particular kind of painting, it is never a predetermined painting”. What Richter aims at in his abstracts is deriving content from the form. Painting for Richter is “the creation of an analogy to the ineffable and inconceivable, which in this way will assume form and become freely available”. The exhibition is supported by RheinEnergie - a partner of Museum Ludwig.
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