Gundel, painted in 1992, is a re-visitation of Georg Baselitz’s Hero series, in which he uses an “abstract idiom characterized by an allover style in which the figure is interwoven within the painted armature” (D. Waldman, Georg Baselitz, Solomon R. Guggenheim, New York: 1995. P. 174). In this composition, the black and white grid is intermixed with a distorted and schematic rendering of an abstract figure, “with only the suggestion of a human head” (T. McEvilley. “Georg Baselitz”, Artforum. April 1994, p. 95). The grid format spread over the canvas calls to mind the geometric compositions of Piet Mondrian’s paintings from early the 1930s and early 1940s.
Exhibited at Pace Gallery in 1994, and acquired by the present owner shortly thereafter, Gundel is an exquisite and fresh to market example from the artist’s oeuvre. Baselitz’s paintings uniquely render a crude abstract language that was impregnated by his childhood in post-World War II in Berlin. “What I see instantly arouses a memory of something I once saw, and it has turned into pictures, and meanwhile I see the pictures more and more sharply as models for pictures” (G. Baselitz 'Painting Out of my Head, Upside Down, Out of a Hat' November, 1993 quoted in Georg Baselitz, exh. cat., Bologna 1997. p. 45).
Baselitz’s work is included in some of the most important contemporary art collections in the world, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Tate Gallery in London, among many others. His art, drawn from manifold resources, sometimes can be perceived as hermetic: “Baselitz’s images are too full of historical, philosophical, and personal references to be dealt with quickly” (D. Waldman, Georg Baselitz, Solomon R. Guggenheim, New York: 1995. P. 164).