press release

Gerhard Richter is today regarded within the art world as one of the greatest living painters of the 20th century. Born in Dresden in 1932, he moved to Düsseldorf in 1961 to attend art school. There he came into contact with Sigmar Polke and Konrad Fischer-Lueg and began to develop a type of art, influenced by western Pop Art, that adopted a critical stance towards the socialist realism of East Germany. At the Künstakademie in Düsseldorf, one of the foremost centres of artistic experimentation of the 1960s, inspired by teachers such as Beuys and the Fluxus movement, he became acquainted with some of the most important figures from the world of new German painting and rapidly became its leading light for the pictorial work that he produced in the international context from the 1960s onwards. His work earned recognition early on. The first signs of this could already be seen in 1977 with a retrospective exhibition at the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris. Since then, his renown has grown steadily, with exhibitions at the world’s most prestigious public and private institutions and inclusion in the most important collections. As proof, in the last two years alone he has exhibited at the most important art museums in Europe and the United States – the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Art Institute in Chicago, the Museum of Modern Art in San Francisco, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden of the Smithsonian Institute in Washington (2002), the Deutsche Guggenheim in Berlin and Whitechapel Art Gallery in London (2003). The monographic exhibition presented by the Museu do Chiado – National Museum of Contemporary Art is the first solo exhibition by the artist in Portugal. It consists of a series of 30 works that constitute some of the artist’s most representative paintings, belonging to a private German collection constituted by the artist himself, through which can be seen the multiplicity of directions that his work has taken. The series groups together works from all the chronological stages of his career, starting with Badende am Strand, from 1960, and ending with Abstraktes Bild, dating from 2003. The exhibition includes work ranging from deliberately abstract compositions to others that display photographic realism expressed in the form of landscape, portrait, nude, interior, still-life and even ‘vanitas’, with the distinction between the two ambiguous and undefined. Through this variety, the exhibition constitutes an excellent examination of the diversity and richness that Gerhard Richter, one of the greatest names in international art of the post-war era, has manifested throughout his painting career.

Hosting museums: Centro de Arte Contemporáneo de Málaga and Museu do Chiado – NMCA Pressetext

Gerhard Richter - A private collection
Kurator: Jürgen Shilling