A drawing is always naked.
Gagosian New York is pleased to present new drawings by Georg Baselitz.
Drawing has always been central to Baselitz’s art. Parallel to his cerebral yet impassioned paintings and roughly hewn sculptures, the practice of drawing is a test site for assimilation and disorientation in his oeuvre. In a new series of two-part ink drawings, Baselitz is “visited” by Katsushika Hokusai (1760–1849), whose exquisitely controlled color woodblock prints epitomized the refined ukiyo-e genre in Japanese art and persist in the popular imagination today.
In each diptych, Baselitz pairs reconsidered motifs from his own work with iterations—in ink with blue, yellow, or green watercolor washes—of an intimate late work by Hokusai, a wry self-portrait sketched at the end of a letter to his print publisher in 1842. The letter accompanied a group of prints made forty years earlier, which the Japanese master described to his publisher as repetitive, unresolved, and immature. He signed it with his pseudonym of the day: “Sincerely yours, the eighty-three-year-old Hachiemon.”
The message of Hokusai’s letter is that perfection comes with age and hindsight. Paired with his confidently drawn self-portrait as a mischievous old man, this poignant gesture from the elderly artist evidently provides inspiration across time and cultures for Baselitz’s own pursuit of newness and transformation while continuing to reflect on his own life and mortality.
The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated publication with an essay by John-Paul Stonard.
Georg Baselitz: What if...
Richard Calvocoressi narrates a tour of an exhibition of new paintings by Georg Baselitz in San Francisco, describing the visual effect of these luminous compositions and explaining their relationship to earlier works by the artist.
Artist to Artist: Georg Baselitz and Zeng Fanzhi
On the occasion of Georg Baselitz: Years later at Gagosian, Hong Kong, Zeng Fanzhi composed a written foreword for the exhibition’s catalogue and a video message to the German painter. Baselitz wrote a letter of thanks to the Chinese artist for his insightful thoughts.
Georg Baselitz: Life, Love, Death
Richard Calvocoressi writes on the painter’s latest bodies of work, detailing the techniques employed and their historical precedents.
Gagosian Quarterly Summer 2020
The Summer 2020 issue of Gagosian Quarterly is now available, featuring Joan Jonas’s Mirror Piece 1 (1969) on its cover.
On the occasion of a career-spanning exhibition at the Gallerie dell’Accademia, Venice, Richard Calvocoressi tracks the evolution of Georg Baselitz’s development from his early education in East Germany to his revelatory trip to Florence, in 1965, and beyond.
Visions of the Self: Jenny Saville on Rembrandt
Jenny Saville reveals the process behind her new self-portrait, painted in response to Rembrandt’s masterpiece Self-Portrait with Two Circles.
Extended through March 23, 2019
January 24–March 23, 2019
555 West 24th Street, New York