This lot will be included in the forthcoming third volume of the official catalogue raisonné of the artist, edited by the Gerhard Richter Archive Dresden, to be published in Spring 2013.
"Accustomed to pictures in which we recognize something real, we rightly refuse to regard mere color (however multifarious) as the thing visualized. Instead we accept that we are seeing the unvisualizable: that which has never been seen before and is not visible. This is not some abstruse game but a matter of sheer necessity: the unknown simultaneously alarms us and fills us with hope, and so we accept the pictures as a possible way to make the inexplicable more explicable, or at all events, more accessible" (G. Richter quoted in H. U. Obrist, Gerhard Richter: The Daily Practice of Painting, Writings 1962 - 1993, London, 1995, p. 100).
Gerhard Richter felt that of all his pictures, his polychrome abstract paintings were the most authentic renderings of reality. In the vibrant Abstraktes Bild, the artist applies bright pigment in distinct gestures and directions to expose the paint in all its unruly, animated materiality. In a diverse vocabulary of painterly marks, Richter opens up his painterly process by calling attention to each layer of colored paint. Richter begins by seamlessly blending a background of indistinct grey, blue and yellow coloring. Over the smooth background, Richter adds thick, gestural strokes of allover green, accented with red, purple, blue and yellow. Its multilayered immediacy also derives from Richter's use of the squeegee, which he began experimenting with in 1980. By highlighting the fundamentally concrete aspects of the picture, Richter strives to "erase the pictorial object's function as an illustration of reality and to replace it with the picture's own reality" (G. Richter quoted in J. Nestegard, Gerhard Richter: Det Umuliges Kunst, Malerier 1964-1998, exh. cat., Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art, Oslo, 1999, p. 45).