Today is the birthday of Gerhard Richter, one of the greatest living artists

Born on February 9, 1932 in Dresden, Germany, Gerhard Richter is considered one of the greatest living artists, with an auction record exceeding 30 million dollars.
A B, Still (1986), olio su tela, 224,8 x 200 cm - Prezzo di aggiudicazione: 33.987.500 $. Contemporary Art - 17/11/2016, Sotheby’s, New York. © Gerhard Richter

Having studied at the Dresden Academy of Fine Arts, where he also met his future wife Marianne, Richter's education was adapted to Soviet programs that prohibited the study of formalist art except for Picasso and Guttuso. In 1956, he broke with academic studies, finding the restrictions imposed on his creativity intolerable, particularly after being exposed to works by Pollock, Fontana, and Fautrier while visiting documenta II in Kassel.

He then left East Germany to find artistic freedom beyond the Iron Curtain. In his early works, Richter demonstrated his interest in current events, consumer society, the media, and popular culture, using photographs as a starting point for his paintings.

His first solo painting exhibition, titled "Gerhard Richter," was presented by Richter in 1964 at the Schmela Gallery in Düsseldorf. Subsequently, he exhibited in Munich and Berlin, and until the early 1970s, his works were shown in various European cities and the United States. His fourth retrospective, "Gerhard Richter: 40 Years of Painting," curated by Robert Storr, premiered at the Museum of Modern Art in New York (MOMA) in February 2002, before being transferred to Chicago, San Francisco (SFMOMA), and Washington.

Gerhard Richter's work is characterized by an extraordinary variety of styles and artistic approaches, ranging from abstract painting to photorealism, to conceptual painting. Richter is known for his ability to explore and challenge the boundaries of traditional painting, using a wide range of techniques and materials to express a profound reflection on the nature of visual representation and perception.

One of his most famous series is the "Blur Paintings," in which he uses a blurring technique to create works that challenge our perception of reality and memory. These blurred and fuzzy works may seem abstract at first glance, but they contain a deep sense of mystery and suggestion.

Richter is also known for his "Family Portraits," in which he explores the complex and often obscure dynamics of family relationships through paintings that combine realistic elements with abstract backgrounds and experimental painterly gestures.

Beyond his painting production, Richter has also explored other expressive means, including photography, sculpture, and installation, demonstrating a continuous experimentation and innovation in his work.

An artist, Gerhard Richter stands out for his eclecticism, conceptual depth, and continuous search for new forms of artistic expression.

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Pubblicato il February 09, 2024