• Post-War & Contemporary Art Da auction at Christies

    Sale 12245

    Post-War & Contemporary Art Day Auction

    7 October 2016, London, King Street

  • Lot 269

    GERHARD RICHTER (B. 1932)

    Grün-Blau-Rot (Green-Blue-Red)

    Estimate

    GERHARD RICHTER (B. 1932)
    Grün-Blau-Rot (Green-Blue-Red)
    signed, numbered and dated '789-88 Richter, 93' (on the reverse)
    oil on canvas
    11¾ x 15¾in. (30 x 40cm.)
    Painted in 1993


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    ‘For Richter, the squeegee is the most important implement for integrating coincidence into his art. For years, he used it sparingly, but he came to appreciate how the structure of paint applied with a squeegee can never be completely controlled. It thus introduces a moment of surprise that often enables him to extricate himself from a creative dead-end, destroying a prior, unsatisfactory effort and opening the door to a fresh start.’ (D. Elger, Gerhard Richter: A Life in Painting, Chicago 2009, p. 251).

    With its palimpsest of prismatic pigment swept across the canvas in vivid kaleidoscopic striations, Grün-Blau-Rot is a vibrant example of Gerhard Richter’s abstract work. Infinite shades of indigo and emerald green are shrouded by a swathe of fiery red, intermingling and colliding to form a hypnotic panorama of shimmering chromatic strata. Painstakingly layering blue and red over a base of vibrant green paint, Richter enables the pigments to fracture and blend as they are spread over each preceding layer. Applying the paint directly from the tube along the border of his canvas, Richter pulls his pigments across the surface of the work with a squeegee—his signature tool since the 1980s. This instantaneous act of the push and pull of chromatic streaks embody the encounter between chance effect and careful orchestration that lies at the heart of Richter’s practice. The artist himself delights in the automatism of the squeegee, claiming ‘It is a good technique for switching off thinking. Consciously, I can’t calculate the result. But subconsciously, I can sense it. This is a nice “between” state’ (G. Richter, quoted in S. Koldehoff, ‘Gerhard Richter, Die Macht der Malerei’, in Art. Das Kunstmagazin, December 1999, p. 20).

    This painting stems from a series of works created for the publishing company Parkett, renowned for their artist editions uniquely constructed in direct collaboration with the artist. With approximately 250 art works and 100 books, Parkett’s operation has additionally expanded to include a small museum and library for contemporary arts. Richter’s edition Parkett vol. 35 (1993) is a seminal volume that stands amongst the most celebrated works the company has ever produced.

    Special Notice

    Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's Resale Right Regulations 2006 apply to this lot, the buyer agrees to pay us an amount equal to the resale royalty provided for in those Regulations, and we undertake to the buyer to pay such amount to the artist's collection agent.


    Provenance

    Parkett Verlag, Zurich.
    Private Collection, Germany.
    Anon. sale, Christie’s London, 6 February 2003, lot 717.
    Galerie Maulberger, Munich.
    Acquired from the above by the present owner.


    Literature

    Parkett, no. 35, 1993, no. 2 (illustrated in colour, p. 97; others from the series illustrated in colour on the cover, inside of cover, pp. 1, 97-101 and 174).
    Kunst- und Ausstellungshalle der Bundesrepublik Deutschland (ed.), Gerhard Richter, Werkübersicht/Catalogue Raisonné: 1962-1993, vol. III, Bonn 1993, p. 196, no. 789/1-115 (two others from the series illustrated in colour, unpaged).
    H. Butin (ed.), Gerhard Richter, Editionen 1965-1993, Catalogue Raisonné, Bremen 1993, no. 69 (another from the series illustrated in colour, p. 167).
    H. Butin and S. Gronert (eds.), Gerhard Richter Editionen 1965-2004 Catalogue Raisonné, Ostfildern-Ruit 2004 (another from the series illustrated in colour, pp. 35 and 229).
    H. Butin, S. Gronert and T. Olbricht (eds.), Gerhard Richter Editionen 1965-2013 Catalogue Raisonné, Ostfildern-Ruit 2014, no. 41 (another from the series illustrated in colour, pp. 43 and 252).
    D. Elger (ed.), Gerhard Richter Catalogue Raisonné Volume 4: 1988-1994, Ostfildern-Ruit 2015, no. 789/1-115 (the series illustrated in colour, pp. 524-525).


    Exhibited

    Los Angeles, MAK-Center for Arts and Architecture, Silent & Violent, 1995 (another from the series exhibited, illustrated in colour, unpaged).
    New York, The Museum of Modern Art, Collaborations with Parkett: 1984 to Now, 2001 (another from the series exhibited).
    Dublin, Irish Museum of Modern Art, Beautiful Productions. Parkett Editions since 1984, 2002 (another from the series exhibited).
    Zurich, Kunsthaus Zürich, Parkett - 20 Years of Artist’s Collaborations, 2004 (another from the series exhibited).
    Tübingen, Kunsthalle, Gerhard Richter. Printed! Druckgrafik, Foto-Editionen und Künstlerbücher, 2005 (another from the series exhibited).
    Kanazawa, 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, 200 Artworks 25 Years. Artist’s Editions for PARKETT, 2009 (another from the series exhibited, illustrated in colour, p. 339).
    Singapore, Singapore Tyler Print Institute, 200 Artworks – 25 Years, Artists’ Editions for Parkett, 2010 (another from the series exhibited). This exhibition later travelled to Seoul, Seoul Arts Center/Hangaram Museum.
    Beijing, Ullens Center for Contemporary Art, INSIDE A BOOK A HOUSE OF GOLD: Artists’ Editions for Parkett, 2012 (another from the series exhibited).
    Taipei, Taipei Fine Arts Museum, Parkett – 220 Artists’ Editions & Collaborations +5, 2013 (another from the series exhibited).