Georg Baselitz: “Geteilter Held (Remix) Divided Hero”, 2008, color woodcut printed on Japanese paper, each of the 50 prints in this edition handpainted in different colors. We are offering the colors white / orange and yellow/ orange, numbered, handsiged on the front right, on white margin, edition of 50, size: picture 89,9 x 49,2 cm, total size including white margin: 124 x 70 cm. Price upon request.
About this Artwork
Georg Baselitz spent the formative years of his painting career in West Germany, where an early impetus behind his work was the question of the country’s still-troubled national identity and the discontinuity of the self and society. Between 1965 and 1966, Baselitz created the masterworks in his monumental Heroes and New Types series. Georg Baselitz: The Heroes reproduces the series in full-color with close readings of the paintings with regard to their artistic style and historical context. The paintings in Georg Baselitz: The Heroes and later the HEROES Remix reflect a deep ambivalence toward German culture during the time in which the young artist created the series. In these now-classic scenes, military characters are portrayed as fundamentally contradictory figures, wounded and with their fatigues in tatters, their failures engraved on tormented faces. These images contrast sharply with the economic and political success of postwar West Germany. At the same time, the series served as a forceful formulation of the artist’s position in relation to society. Reproducing the boldly outspoken series, Georg Baselitz: The Heroes collects the artist’s earliest statements on the theme of growing up against the fractured landscape of postwar Germany, a theme that has continued to be developed and refined throughout the artist’s remarkable body of work during all his life as an artist.
About Georg Baselitz
Painter, sculptor, printmaker and draughtsman, Georg Baselitz is one of Germany’s most celebrated living artists, with a distinguished career spanning over fifty years. Born Hans-Georg Kern in 1938, he grew up in Saxony, an area that later became East Germany. Whilst studying painting at the Academy of Art in East Berlin (1956) he was sent down after one year for ‚political immaturity‘.He then applied at the Academy in West Berlin and moved there in 1958, completing his studies in 1962. During this period he adopted the surname Baselitz, reflecting his place of birth Deutschbaselitz. In searching for alternatives to the strongly narrative art of Social Realism and abstract painting, he became interested in art considered to be outside of the mainstream of Modernism. He began to look to Ferdinand v. Rayski, Michail Wrubel amomgst others and imagery that was rooted in the Art Brut. He was also inspired by Existentialist art and literature (Fautrier, Beckett, Ionesco, Artaud), by Dada (Schwitters, Picabia) and the works of the German authors Nietzsche and Gottfried Benn.
Baselitz’s first solo exhibition in 1963 at Galerie Werner & Katz, Berlin, caused a public scandal and several paintings were confiscated by the German authorities claiming that they were publicly indecent. Among them Die grosse Nacht im Eimer (‘The Big Night Down the Drain’), which depicted a masturbating dwarf-like figure. By the mid-1960s, Baselitz embarked on a series of paintings depicting monumental male figures, which he described as Rebels, Shepherds or New Types (‘Ein neuer Typ’). Viewed within the Romantic tradition, the rebel (or hero/partisan) is often regarded as an outsider associated with the figure of the artist. These paintings are often termed as the ‘Hero’ (‘Helden’) series and were prompted after Baselitz’s scholarship in Florence in 1965, where he became interested in Italian Mannerist prints. Baselitz depicted his figures located within mythical, ruined landscapes, each with symbolic attributes to identify their individual characters, such as army boots, knapsacks or uniform jackets, often with exaggerated and exposed sexual organs. The lone figure as a prophet or saint also alludes to home coming soldiers stumbling, dazed, through battle-scarred post-war Germany.
The ‘Fracture’ paintings of the late 1960s revealed Baselitz’s keen interest in forests and trees (and the motifs that have historically been associated with them, with rural landscapes peopled with woodsmen and hunters). They were divided into segments so that the imagery could be reorganised pictorially. In 1969, he decided to create and display work upside down in order to re-focus the viewer on the pure pictorial merits of the painting. By attempting to overcome the representational, content-driven character of his earlier work, this also enabled him to emphasise the qualities of the composition independently from the motif.
By the late 1970s, he was making monumental sculptures of figures and heads with rudimentary and deliberately irregular forms. He used wood, he said, because “it enables avoidance of any attractiveness of form, any craft or elegance … objects in wood are unique, simple, unpretentious”. Having spent most of the early 1970s apparently working outside the mainstream, dominated at the time by Conceptual Art practice, by the 1980s he had established his international reputation (cemented by exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale in 1980 and ‘A New Spirit in Painting’ in 1981). During the 1980s and early 1990s, the canvases became denser and more heavily worked, and subject matter returned to play a greater role. He began introducing motifs from Slavic folk art, sometimes combining motifs with figures of family members taken from old photographs. The styles of German Romanticism inspired his more recent work and he even addressed works created in the Socialist Realism of Stalin’s era (which he rejected so forcefully at the beginning of his career). In 2005 Baselitz introduced the ‘Remix’ in his work, in which he has returned to key phases of his own art history (including ‘ The Big Night Down the Drain’ and ‘The Great Friends’) and made new versions of his work. They are painted intuitively, with quick and spontaneous flashes of bright, transparent colour. References to the Nazi leader Hitler, which in the earlier works had been more ambiguous, are more directly emphasised. These works have allowed Baselitz to revisit and excavate the past, pushing his own painterly vocabulary to create works that are fresh and liberated. Georg Baselitz lives and works in Basel, Switzerland, at lake Ammersee, Germany and in Imperia, Italy.
Georg Baselitz: ‘Without trousers (pants) in Avignon’, 2014, Aquatinta, Dry Point and Etching on Sommerset White Satin 140 lb paper, signed and numbered, edition of 100 (70 arabic + 20 roman +10 AP), size: 105 x 53 cm – 41 3/8 x 21 in. Price € 7.900,-. Order here!
Georg Baselitz: ‘Der Elch (The Elk)’, 1986, Drypoint on Hahnemühle on 350 gr. wove paper, signed, numbered, edition of 25, size image: 43 x 32 cm, size sheet: 76 x 56 cm. Price upon request.
Georg Baselitz: ‘Norweger Mädchen (Norwegian Girl)’, 1986, Drypoint on Hahnemühle on 350 gr. wove paper, signed, numbered, edition of 25, size image: 43 x 32 cm, size sheet: 76 x 56 cm. Price upon request.
Georg Baselitz: ‘Hirsch (Deer)’, 1999, etching, signed and numbered in pencil, edition of 20, paper size: 23 x 18 in (58 x 45 cm), image size: 9 x 6 in (23 x 16 cm). Price upon request.
Georg Baselitz: ‘Rote Schwestern (Red Sisters)‘, 1994, woodcut in colours, signed, numbered, dated, edition of 25, picture size: 27,3 x 29, 2 in / 69,5 x 99,5 cm, sheet: 74,5 x 104 cm / 29,3 x 40,9 in. Price upon request.
Georg Baselitz: ‘Frau am Abgrund, zwei Rosen’, 1999, Etching/aquatint on rag paper, signed and numbered, edition of 50, size: 66 x 50,2 cm (26 x 19¾”). Price upon request.
Georg Baselitz: ‘Melancholie, drei Rosen’, 1999, Etching/aquatint on rag paper, signed and numbered, edition of 50, size: 66 x 50,2 cm (26 x 19¾”). Price upon request.
Georg Baselitz: ‘Der Bote’, 1998, Etching, signed and numbered in pencil, edition of 130, paper size: 17 x 13 in (44 x 32 cm), image size: 9 x 6 in (23 x 15 cm). Price upon request.
Georg Baselitz: ‘Der Auftritt’, 2005, Linocut, hand colored, signed and numbered, edition of 6, size: 226 x 170 cm (89¼ x 67″). Price upon request.