With its architecture of free-floating grids depicted in hues of red, green, and a delicate grey, Günther Förg’s Untitled (1993) is an elegant example of his Grid Paintings (Gitterbilder). By the early 1990s, Förg had abandoned his stringent monochrome colour fields in favour of a matrix of gestural gridded works marked with a painterly naïveté. Replacing his trademark lead backdrop with acrylic on canvas, Förg’s geometric forms inhabit the brilliant white canvas with an unexpected poeticism, their levity echoed in the apparition of striations marking the centre of the canvas. The architectural elements of Förg’s large-scale painting create an illusionistic space in which red and green grids emulate the fenestration of building façades.
In keeping with the tenets of postmodernism, Förg’s artistic experimentation persistently engaged his predecessors, ranging from Piet Mondrian to Paul Klee and Edvard Munch. This composition is a playful iteration of Mondrian’s propagation of neo-plasticism, which championed formal purity through austere and regimented blocks of colour. Förg appropriates the orthogonal system that formed the foundation of Mondrian’s work by imbuing his Minimalist order with personal intuition. Förg’s grids gracefully juxtapose composed geometric order with the humanism of a painter’s touch. Untitled acutely draws upon timely art-historical trends, modifying the Minimalist abstract value system to demonstrate a unique artistic language that permeates throughout the loosely rendered network of lines.