Imi Knoebel (b. 1940)
Imi Knoebel (b. 1940)
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Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's… Read more ART FOR FUTURE – SELECTED WORKS FROM THE UNICREDIT GROUP
Imi Knoebel (b. 1940)

Untitled

Details
Imi Knoebel (b. 1940)
Untitled
signed and dated 'imi 88' (on the reverse)
acrylic and household gloss paint on five joined panels
66 7/8 x 98 ¼ x 2 ¾in. (169.8 x 249.5 x 7cm.)
Executed in 1988
Provenance
Galerie Werner Klein, Bonn.
Achenbach Kunsthandel, Düsseldorf.
Acquired from the above by the present owner in 1989.
Exhibited
Vienna, BACA Kunstforum, Past, Present, Future: Highlights from the UniCredit Group Collection, 2009-2010, p. 182 (illustrated in colour, p. 120). This exhibition later travelled to Verona, Palazzo della Regione and Istanbul, Yapi Kredi Culture Centre.
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.
VAT rate of 20% is payable on hammer price and buyer's premium

Lot Essay

Bold and arresting, Imi Knoebel’s Untitled presents a deft interplay of colour and form across five joined panels, painted the year the artist was included in Documenta 8 in Kassel. In Untitled, a crimson rectangle is balanced against stark white wood. Although spare, the work is part shutter and part portal, and redolent with associations. Fascinated by the relationship between colour and its material support, Knoebel’s geometric abstraction builds on the legacies of Mondrian and Malevich, artists he first encountered while studying under Joseph Beuys at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf. It was Malevich’s iconic Black Square, 1915, however, that gave Knoebel the freedom to ‘start at nothing’ and create a radical gesture (I. Knoebel quoted in K. Connolly, ‘Artist Imi Knoebel: 'If you want to stay alive, you have to do something radical', The Guardian, 15 July, 2015, https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2015/jul/15/artist-imi-knoebel-if-you-want-to-stay-alive-you-have-to-do-something-radical). While at the Kunstakademie, shared a studio with Blinky Palermo, whose Romantic conception of art inspired Knoebel’s embrace of colour. Filtered through this eclectic assortment of influences, he established a vibrant visual idiom distinctly his own, producing graphic abstractions that resonate with feeling. As Knoebel said when asked about his paintings, ‘I look at it and can only take in the beauty, and I don’t want to see it in relation to anything else. Only what I see, simply because it has its own validity’ (Imi Knoebel, quoted in J. Stüttgen, ‘“I wouldn’t Say Anything Voluntary Anyway!” Interview with Imi Knoebel’, Imi Knoebel: Works 1966- 2014, exh. cat., Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg, Wolfsburg, p. 24). In the endless red of Untitled, Knoebel’s zeal is abundantly apparent, and by constructing the work out of wood, he has produced a chromatic materiality and an overwhelming saturation of light.

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