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  • Provenance

    Galerie Michael Werner, Berlin

  • Catalogue Essay

    “Over and over throughout his artistic career, Baselitz has shocked the public- not so much by means of the provocative representation of sexual organs as by the great force of the aesthetic strategies he chooses. It would be wrong to emphasize one-sidedly the provocative element of Baselitz’s work. The painter was able to heighten the violence of his images without recourse to nightmares, mutilations and organ forms by intensifying the materiality of his colors. Baselitz arranged, with great painterly verve, his world of motifs around the unreachable core, a cool crystal that painterly representation can never reach. From time to time in recent years, the artist has spoken of this aim by means of a metaphor; he says he is searching for the “picture behind the picture”. Every successful work, in this perspective, is part of a chain of painterly actions that can never arrive at their goal. There can be no now in the painting of Georg Baselitz,” (S. Gohr, Georg Baselitz: Works from the 1960s and 1970s, New York, 2006).

  • Artist Biography

    Georg Baselitz

    Enthusiastically disruptive and perennially iconoclastic, Georg Baselitz stands out as an artistic outlier among Germany’s impressive roster of postwar artmakers. Born in the former German Democratic Republic and expelled from his East German art school for “sociopolitical immaturity,” Baselitz retreated to the West and quickly became known for creatively challenging widespread artistic conventions by painting in a violent and energetic form of representation in gleeful defiance of the prevailing abstract tendencies of the avant-garde following World War II. Baselitz, favoring figuration, painted caustic portraits and kinetic landscapes in the tradition of the German Expressionists before literally upending his practice in the late 1960s by painting upside-down, creating a disarming pseudo-abstract effect that emphasizes surface over substance.

    Baselitz’s work has been widely celebrated for its unapologetic and unconventional innovation as well as for its occasionally confrontational subject matter. Baselitz’s critical breakthrough came in 1963 with the debut of the unabashedly outrageous painting Die groβe Nacht im Eimer, currently in the collection of the Museum Ludwig, Cologne, which immediately attracted the attention of the German media and judicial system. This work, and others, set the tone for a long and celebrated career of convention-shattering paintings, prints, and sculptures that are at once stylistically innovative and deferential to the German artistic tradition. Today, Baselitz’s work can be found in major institutions worldwide such as the Museum Ludwig and The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

     
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46

Untitled

1963
Gouache, watercolor and oil pastel on paper.
24 1/2 x 19 in. (62.2 x 48.3 cm).
Signed “Baselitz” lower right.

Estimate
$80,000 - 120,000 

Sold for $264,000

Contemporary Art Part I

17 May 2007
7pm New York