Thursday, December 03, 2009

Gerhard Richter at Marian Goodman

While walking through the Gerhard Richter show at the Marian Goodman Gallery, we tried very hard to come up with another artist who has created and/or mastered so many styles. In a career spanning fifty-something years (and counting), Richter has produced extraordinary examples of photo realism, photo blur, pop art, minimalism, and abstraction, among others.

With one exception, his newest paintings fall mostly into the abstract category, layered paint with no obvious entrance or exit, forcing the eye to every corner of the canvas. They are beautiful.

The exception is called September, for obvious reasons.

If his blurred but legible representation of September 11th is taken as the show's center, the rest of the paintings become somewhat landscape-esque themselves. Richter has depicted the world not as he or you or we see it, but rather the world as it could be seen (and sometimes is) by eyes made tired, blind, shut, or even excited by smoke.

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