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Gerhard Richter: Bilderverzeichnis - Signed Print

Bilderverzeichnis
Signed Print

Gerhard Richter

POA

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Lithograph, 1969
Signed Print Edition of 100
H 53cm x W 50cm

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Critical Review

The title of this work - Bildverzeichnis - translates to ‘Image register’. Exactly that, the print sees Richter compile an index of his own artworks completed in the years 1962-1969. Works included in Richter’s list include the world-famous Stadtbild series (1968), works in the 1969 Swiss Alps collection (marked Alpen - 1969), and Seestück I (1969). Assuming the form of a long, typewritten list, arranged in three columns, the print Is testament to Richter’s keen interest in technology and its intersection with art in the contemporary era. Notable for its absence of brush strokes, the print’s tripartite composition recalls the form of the triptych, which is often associated with the Christian tradition in art.

Referring to his artworks through letters and words alone, the typographic nature of this print - together with its triptych-like form - could constitute a complex commentary on the nature and role of art in the secular age. Richter once famously commented that contemporary society lacks ‘the spiritual foundation that supported romantic painting. We have lost the feeling of “God’s omnipresence in nature”. For us, everything is empty.’ In a sense, here Richter constructs a non-referential artwork to make exactly the same point.

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