Gerhard Richter Four Panes 1967

Stark and Cold? Gerhard Richter’s 4 Panes 1967 included in Gerhard Richter: Panorama.

Courtesy Herbert Foundation
© Gerhard Richter

 This week we have been installing the show. It is the most exciting and exhausting part of the project. 150 works are put up in five days. Before installing, we have planned which works go into which rooms. Only two works have changed rooms. But composing which paintings go on which walls of a given room, and in which order, and how far apart, and at what height. This is the challenge…

Sometimes the order is obvious and it is a matter of fine spacing. Other times the art handlers are asked to move paintings about the room into every configuration until one seems right. The art handlers do the most amazing job - patient and meticulous.

Of course we, as curators, learn more and more about Richter’s work as each crate is unpacked. My highlight was when we opened a medium sized abstract painting from the early 80s. The images we had seen in the catalogues were way too dull. When I began working on the show, I really disliked this phase of Richter’s career but now it’s among my favourite moments. The rose pinks and blues in this painting are stunning and there is the same complex array of brushwork and impasto as in the others from this time.

One work, Hedge, is a really lyrical painting. But the more and more works we’ve put up, the more brutal an artist Richter has seemed to me. The three clouds are oppressive, not ethereal. His glass sculptures are stark and cold. Abstract paintings are gouged and scratched at. Then there is the sombreness of the Baader Meinhof series. Richter’s work is never simply pleasurable and I think this brutal character of the work will come across well in the show. Let me know if you agree.

Comments

d.mcardle

s'pose those panes are looking at looking ? & 'Hedge' as in hedge ihre Einsatze ? or that there is something on either side (OR to avoid making clear) A Per Kirkeby puts you inside the picture but these put you inside and outside at the same time ? always looking at looking ? I think if you just see lyrical you might be standing in the wrong place or just trying to be cheery .But by lyrical you mean composition harmony and light and space/gaps , then fair do's

Adwel Lo

Panorama sounds so exciting! I feel Richter's "4 Panes" speaks to the modernity within us all - the juxtapositioning of symmetry against asymmetry, the need for organized spatial patterning, and the deep set desire to change whatever we perceive in front of us. Who would not want to move one pane forward or back a little? We feel a desire for action which is thwarted through the inactivity of being merely a spectator. A poignant piece for our times!

Alison Ridley

am really excited to be visiting the show preview on Wednesday!! I've spent many happy hours sitting in front of the "Cage" paintings at T.Mod and am thrilled now to be able to view the full scope of one one my favourite artist's work - definitely a once in a lifetime opportunity - Roll on Wednesday! And most likely many repeat visits afterwards.

emma drye

I would like to say thankyou to Gerhard Richter for his clear thinking and ego free pursuit of an understanding of the nature of painting. I'm muddling on myself but it is extremely heartening to spend a few moments in Panorama, watching a more ordered mind approach the key themes for any painter. Cheers.