Stil: Fliegen Weiss mit Raster

  • 1977
  • Markus Lüpertz
  • oil on canvas
  • 150,5 x 213,5 cm (incl. lijst)
    147,5 x 210,9 cm
  • Location not on view.
  • Acquired in 1980
  • Inventory number 1113

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This painting by the German artist Markus Lüpertz consists mainly of triangular forms, some of which are fairly evenly coloured, while others have a dotted pattern. Lüpertz placed two plain triangles of the same colour next to each other in such a way that they form a kite several times. Along the lower edge of the painting, three rectangles have been painted with stripes or diamonds. The canvas is blue in the top-left corner, merging into a blue dotted pattern on a red background lower down. Here there is a “cloud” of white with green dots. The paint has been applied thinly, and with the exception of the lines and stripes at the bottom, the canvas has been painted with coarse brushstrokes.

Like his German colleagues, Baselitz, Immendorf, Penck and Kiefer, Markus Lüpertz created coarsely painted figurative paintings from the mid-1960s, without avoiding emotional themes. This is remarkable at a time when leading museums and galleries focused particularly on impersonal Minimalist and Conceptual Art. The young Germans turned their back on Modernism and their style of painting was sometimes called Neo-Expressionism. They were provocative, using themes which referred to German history; for example, Lüpertz painted soldiers’ helmets, military greatcoats and shapes referring to the German border posts. Nevertheless, Lüpertz was not concerned with the significance of these objects. They served only as a theme for his paintings.

He considered that everything could serve as a motif for a painting, and was concerned with the art of painting for its own sake. In his own words, he was concerned with “the art of painting about the art of painting.” Up to 1977 his work consisted of canvases in which he placed recognisable themes in an environment which was difficult to define. After that he developed 'Stil Malerei'. These works consisted of completely abstract forms, but Lüpertz placed them together in such a way that there was an illusion of space and therefore the possibility of associations with a figurative content. In 'Stil: Fliegen Weiss mit Raster' the blue serves as the sky in a landscape and the other forms can be seen alternatively as areas of land, concrete but indefinable objects or abstract fields. The tension between figuration and abstraction, space and flatness, is characteristic of Lupertz’s work. He always made series of interrelated paintings.

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