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Anselm Kiefer

Installation view, Anselm Kiefer: For Louis-Ferdinand Céline: Voyage au bout de la nuit, Copenhagen Contemporary, Copenhagen, 2017 Artwork © Anselm Kiefer

Installation view, Anselm Kiefer: For Louis-Ferdinand Céline: Voyage au bout de la nuit, Copenhagen Contemporary, Copenhagen, 2017

Artwork © Anselm Kiefer

Anselm Kiefer, Les extases féminines (The Feminine Ecstasies), 2013 Watercolor on paper, 65 ¾ × 60 ⅝ inches (167 × 154 cm)© Anselm Kiefer, photo by Georges Poncet

Anselm Kiefer, Les extases féminines (The Feminine Ecstasies), 2013

Watercolor on paper, 65 ¾ × 60 ⅝ inches (167 × 154 cm)
© Anselm Kiefer, photo by Georges Poncet

Anselm Kiefer, Paul Celan: wir schöpften die Finsternis leer, wir fanden das wort, das den Sommer heraufkam: Blume; (We scooped the darkness empty, we found the word that ascended summer: flower), 2012 Oil, emulsion, acrylic, on photograph on canvas, 110 ¼ × 149 ⅝ inches (280 × 380 cm )© Anselm Kiefer

Anselm Kiefer, Paul Celan: wir schöpften die Finsternis leer, wir fanden das wort, das den Sommer heraufkam: Blume; (We scooped the darkness empty, we found the word that ascended summer: flower), 2012

Oil, emulsion, acrylic, on photograph on canvas, 110 ¼ × 149 ⅝ inches (280 × 380 cm )
© Anselm Kiefer

Anselm Kiefer, Merkaba, 2010 Photograph, acrylic, shellac, ash, cotton dress, burned books, and plaster coated thorn bushes in glass and steel frame, 111 × 120 ⅞ × 13 13/16 inches (282 × 307 × 35 cm)© Anselm Kiefer

Anselm Kiefer, Merkaba, 2010

Photograph, acrylic, shellac, ash, cotton dress, burned books, and plaster coated thorn bushes in glass and steel frame, 111 × 120 ⅞ × 13 13/16 inches (282 × 307 × 35 cm)
© Anselm Kiefer

Anselm Kiefer, Untitled (Berenice), 2003 Painted photograph with hair, 50 × 38 inches (127 × 96.5 cm)© Anselm Kiefer

Anselm Kiefer, Untitled (Berenice), 2003

Painted photograph with hair, 50 × 38 inches (127 × 96.5 cm)
© Anselm Kiefer

About

Anselm Kiefer's monumental body of work represents a microcosm of collective memory, visually encapsulating a broad range of cultural, literary, and philosophical allusions—from the Old and New Testaments, Kabbalah mysticism, Norse mythology and Wagner’s Ring Cycle to the poetry of Ingeborg Bachmann and Paul Celan.

Born during the closing months of World War II, Kiefer reflects upon Germany’s post-war identity and history, grappling with the national mythology of the Third Reich. Fusing art and literature, painting and sculpture, Kiefer engages the complex events of history and the ancestral epics of life, death, and the cosmos. His boundless repertoire of imagery is paralleled only by the breadth of media palpable in his work.

Kiefer’s oeuvre encompasses paintings, vitrines, installations, artist books, and an array of works on paper such as drawings, watercolors, collages, and altered photographs. The physical elements of his practice—from lead, concrete, and glass to textiles, tree roots, and burned books—are as symbolically resonant as they are vast-ranging. By integrating, expanding, and regenerating imagery and techniques, he brings to light the importance of the sacred and spiritual, myth and memory.

Anselm Kiefer was born in 1945 in Donaueschingen, Germany. After studying law and Romance languages, he attended the School of Fine Arts at Freiburg im Breisgau and the Art Academy in Karlsruhe while maintaining a contact with Joseph Beuys.

Kiefer’s work has been shown and collected by major museums worldwide, including the following: “Bilder und Bücher,” Kunsthalle Bern, Switzerland (1978); “Verbrennen, verholzen, versenken, versanden,” West German Pavilion, 39th Biennale di Venezia, Italy (1980); “Margarete—Sulamith,” Museum Folkwang, Germany (1981); Kunsthalle Düsseldorf, Germany (1984, traveled to ARC Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, France; and Israel Museum, Jerusalem); “Peintures 1983–1984,” Musée d’Art Contemporain, Bordeaux (1984); and Art Institute of Chicago, Illinois (1987, traveled to Philadelphia Museum of Art, Pennsylvania; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; and Museum of Modern Art, New York, through 1989).

Further museum exhibitions include “Bücher 1969–1990,” Kunsthalle Tübingen, Germany (1990, traveled to Kunstverein München, Germany; and Kunsthaus Zürich, Switzerland, through 1991); Neue Nationalgalerie Berlin, Germany (1991); “Melancholia,” Sezon Museum of Art, Tokyo (1993, traveled to Kyoto National Museum of Art, Japan; and Hiroshima Museum of Contemporary Art, Japan); “Himmel-Erde,” Museo Correr, Venice (1997); and “El viento, el tiempo, el silencio,” Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid (1998).

In recent years, Anselm Kiefer’s solo exhibitions have included Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain (2000); “Maleri 1998–2000,” Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebkæk, Denmark (2001); “Die sieben Himmelspaläste,“ Fondation Beyeler, Basel (2001); “I sette palazzi celesti,” Fondazione Pirelli, Milan (2004); “Heaven and Earth,” Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Texas (2005, traveled to Musée d’Art Contemporain de Montréal, Québec; Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C.; and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, California, through 2007); Guggenheim Museum Bilbao, Spain (2007); “Sternenfall / Chute d’étoiles,” Monumenta, Grand Palais, Paris (2007); “Anselm Kiefer au Louvre,” Musée du Louvre, Paris (2007); Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, Humlebkæk, Denmark (2010); “Shevirat Hakelim,” Tel Aviv Museum of Art, Israel (2011); “Beyond Landscape,” Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo (2013); Royal Academy of Arts, London (2014); “l’alchimie du livre,” Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Paris (2015); Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris (2015); “Kiefer Rodin,” Musée Rodin, Paris (2017, traveled to the Barnes Foundation, Philadelphia, through 2018); “For Velimir Khlebnikov — Fates of Nations,” State Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg (2017); and “Provocations,” The Met Breuer, New York (2017).

Anselm Kiefer

Photo: Peter Rigaud c/o Shotview Syndication

From the Quarterly

Fairs, Events & Announcements

Anselm Kiefer, Uraeus, 2017–18 (detail) © Anselm Kiefer. Photo: Georges Poncet

Public Installation

Anselm Kiefer
Uraeus

May 2–July 22, 2018
Rockefeller Center, New York
www.publicartfund.org

Uraeus is Anselm Kiefer’s first US site-specific public sculpture. Commissioned by Public Art Fund and Tishman Speyer, and presented by Gagosian, the work consists of a gigantic open book with eagle’s wings 30 feet in span, both made of lead, on top of a 20-foot-tall lead-clad stainless steel column. Clustered around the base are further outsize lead books, while a large snake coils up the column. Lead is one of the artist’s preferred materials owing to its soft, fluid properties traditionally associated with alchemical transformation, especially its second stage: dissolution.

Anselm Kiefer, Uraeus, 2017–18 (detail) © Anselm Kiefer. Photo: Georges Poncet

Anselm Kiefer, Uraeus, 2017–18 (detail) © Anselm Kiefer

Artist Talk

Anselm Kiefer

Monday, April 30, 2018, 6:30–8pm
New School, New York
www.publicartfund.org

Anselm Kiefer will speak with Richard Calvocoressi about his new work and past public art projects on the occasion of his new public installation Uraeus at Rockefeller Center, New York, on view May 2–July 22, 2018. To attend the event, purchase tickets at newschool.edu

Anselm Kiefer, Uraeus, 2017–18 (detail) © Anselm Kiefer

Photo: Peter Rigaud

Award

Anselm Kiefer

Anselm Kiefer will be presented with the J. Paul Getty Medal to honor his extraordinary contributions to the practice, understanding, and support of the arts on November 13, 2017 at the Morgan Library and Museum in New York.

Photo: Peter Rigaud

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Museum Exhibitions

Anselm Kiefer, The Moral Law within Us, the Starry Heavens above Us, 1969–2010, Tate and National Galleries of Scotland © Anselm Kiefer

Opening this Week

Artist Rooms
Anselm Kiefer

October 19, 2018–January 27, 2019
Herbert Art Gallery & Museum, Coventry, England
www.theherbert.org

This exhibition features works spanning forty years of Anselm Kiefer’s career, characterized by the artist’s unflinching willingness to confront taboo and controversial issues from recent history.

Anselm Kiefer, The Moral Law within Us, the Starry Heavens above Us, 1969–2010, Tate and National Galleries of Scotland © Anselm Kiefer

Installation view, Black Hole: Arte e matericità tra informe et invisibile, GAMeC—Galleria d’Arte Moderna et Contemporanea di Bergamo, Italy, October 4, 2018–January 6, 2019. Artwork, left to right: Fondazione Palazzo Albizzini-Collezione Burri, Città di Castello © 2018 SIAE; © Piero Manzoni/2018 SIAE. Photo: Antonio Maniscalco

On View

Black Hole
Arte e matericità tra informe et invisibile

Through January 6, 2019
GAMeC—Galleria d’Arte Moderna et Contemporanea di Bergamo, Italy
gamec.it

Black Hole: Arte e matericità tra informe et invisibile is the first exhibition in an ambitious three-year research program dedicated to the theme of matter. Activating a dialogue with the history of scientific and technological discoveries, and investigating the development of aesthetics theories, Black Hole showcases the work of artists who have explored the material element’s most intrinsic significance, where the actual concept of matter shatters to open up a more profound idea of matter as an original element, as the primordial substance that constitutes everything. Work by Urs Fischer, Lucio Fontana, Alberto Giacometti, Anselm Kiefer, and Piero Manzoni is included.

Installation view, Black Hole: Arte e matericità tra informe et invisibile, GAMeC—Galleria d’Arte Moderna et Contemporanea di Bergamo, Italy, October 4, 2018–January 6, 2019. Artwork, left to right: Fondazione Palazzo Albizzini-Collezione Burri, Città di Castello © 2018 SIAE; © Piero Manzoni/2018 SIAE. Photo: Antonio Maniscalco

Ed Ruscha, Azteca/Azteca In Decline, 2007, Broad Art Foundation © Ed Ruscha

On View

A Journey That Wasn’t

Opened June 30, 2018
The Broad, Los Angeles
www.thebroad.org

This exhibition explores complex representations of time and its passage. The show includes more than fifty works drawn from the museum’s collection of postwar and contemporary art and features more than twenty artists, including Richard Artschwager, Gregory Crewdson, Andreas Gursky, Anselm Kiefer, and Ed Ruscha.

Ed Ruscha, Azteca/Azteca In Decline, 2007, Broad Art Foundation © Ed Ruscha

Georg Baselitz, Lehr nich ratte much wilm (Lelf bal wile), 2013 © Georg Baselitz 2018

Closed

Counterpoint
Selections from the Peter Marino Collection

July 28–September 23, 2018
Southampton Arts Center, New York
southamptonartscenter.org

In 1978 Peter Marino acquired an artwork from Andy Warhol. Since then, the Peter Marino Collection has grown to encompass hundreds of paintings and mixed-media pieces representing some of the most notable artists of today. Work by Georg Baselitz, Glenn Brown, Damien Hirst, Anselm Kiefer, Richard Prince, and Andy Warhol is included.

Georg Baselitz, Lehr nich ratte much wilm (Lelf bal wile), 2013 © Georg Baselitz 2018

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Press

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