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  • Provenance

    Monika Sprüth Philomene Magers, Cologne

  • Exhibited

    Dublin, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Karen Kilimnik: Fairy Battle, September 27, 2002-February 2, 2003
    New York, 303 Gallery, Karen Kilimnik, February 16-March 30, 2002

  • Literature

    B. Schwabsky, Vitamin P: New Perspectives in Painting, London / New York, 2002, p. 174 (illustrated)

  • Catalogue Essay

    Kilimnik’s self-portrait Planning the Attack of Malta, the Mastermind, painted in 2001, captures the artist in a moment of reverie, entwined amongst historic references to her past and artistic character. Poised in self-reflection, the artist appears enraptured, surrounded by her ornate surroundings. The interior, decorated in Romanesque Russian style, reflects the artists’ Eastern European heritage. Accompanying the painting is an audio tape, thus, when played the allusion created by the artist is a true foray into the spectrum of art: music, fine art, architecture, design and human character combine to create a poetic allure.

    “To me painting is like magic—it’s fun being able to paint a big house, or lots of animals and there they are as if they’re mine now. Or it’s like traveling back in time like in Antichamber to the year 1650 and actually being there in that room in 1650. When we were little my parents took us to concerts, ballets, operas and museums and we were always surrounded by music. I loved the Academy of Music with its gilt and red plush. I loved the magic of the world on stage—the music, the costumes and scenery and lively stories, and of course I loved fairy tales too.” (Karen Kilimnik, quoted in Edition Patrick Frey, eds., Karen Kilimnik Paintings, Germamy, 2001, p. 311)


Planning the Attack of Malta, the Mastermind

Waterbased oil paint on canvas in artist’s wooden frame with audio cassette.
20 x 16 in. (50.8 x 40.6 cm).
Signed, titled and dated “ ‘May 30 ’01 June 1 ’01 June 8 ’01 June 27 ’01 June 28 ’01 July 20 ’01’ ‘Planning the attack of Malta, the Mastermind Karen Kilimnik’ ” on the reverse.

$450,000 - 451,000 

Sold for $408,000

Contemporary Art Part I

16 Nov 2006, 7pm
New York