Donate Now to Support KDHX

Listen Live
Sunday, 10 June 2012 14:57

It's illuminating to watch 'Gerhard Richter Painting'

gerhardrichterpainting.com gerhardrichterpainting.com
Written by Diane Carson
Rate this item
(0 votes)

About this Media...

Director Corinna Belz’s documentary Gerhard Richter Painting features exactly that: this famous, 79-year-old German artist continuing to produce his unique, creative canvases. Sandwiched in between extensive footage of Richter working in his Cologne atelier, Belz includes snippets from a 1966 interview, a few select exhibitions, and assorted comments.

But the lion’s share of the film remains Richter painting canvases, evaluating them, and reworking his compositions, often multiple times. Richter spreads brushstrokes of bright color on a canvas, lets it dry, and then pulls a wide squeegee spread with more paint across the image, dramatically altering it.

 

Throughout the film, Belz maintains a quiet, restrained, observational stance, a crucial decision since Richter is clearly uncomfortable with the camera’s focus on him, as he explicitly says. Admirably honest, Richter admits that he hides behind the paintings. Moreover, he’s interested in what he doesn’t understand and argues that we can’t talk about painting, what he calls, “another form of thinking.” Known as “a master of changing styles,” Richter speaks eloquently about his philosophy of art, quoting Adorno that paintings are always “mortal enemies,” “assertions that tolerate no company.” Richter says he paints without a plan and “when nothing is wrong any more, then it’s good” and he stops. Several times, I wanted him to stop before he reworked his paintings because they certainly looked great to me.

 

In contrast to documentaries packed with biographical information and numerous interviews, Belz includes only the minimum. Biographical details, most from the 1966 archival interview, establish his birth in 1932 East Germany, his training in Social Realism, and his turning to what he calls Capitalist Realism. The essentials also include important photographs Richter says he’s dragged around since 1969, photos of his family that he didn’t see alive again after leaving Dresden in 1961.

 

Gerhard Richter Painting is not the conventional, encyclopedic detailing of an artist, even this top selling one. Instead, I found watching Richter in action, painting quietly, thoughtfully, sometimes with frustration an engaging, thoroughly enjoyable way to spend time with, not learning about, this great artist.

 

In German with English subtitles with a smattering of English. The St. Louis premiere of Gerhard Richter Painting will be at Webster University’s Winifred Moore auditorium at 7:30 p.m. on Friday, June 15th through Monday, June 18th. For information and the current schedule, you may call 314-968-7487 or go to the web at: Webster.edu/filmseries.
 

Sponsor Message

Become a Sponsor

Find KDHX Online

KDHX on Instagram
KDHX on YouTube
KDHX on SoundCloud
KDHX on Facebook
KDHX on Twitter
KDHX on flickr

Local Artist Spotlight


Dad Jr: Get Down. Hard.

Sun June 29

Graham Pagano

Mon June 23
Graham Pagano's debut album Quit Complaining is a high charged mix of old and new music. his old blues and classic country feel blended up with a rock and roll attitude makes this stripped down album explode…

KDHX Recommends

July
Saturday
26

Genevieve at Harvest Sessions 2014

Genevieve at Harvest Sessions 2014 Harvest Sessions welcomes Genevieve -- featuring Rebecca Ryan and Leslie Sanazaro -- to the West Pool Pavilion for a morning of acoustic music. This free Saturday morning concert series takes place at the Tower Grove Farmers'...


July
Sunday
27

88.1 KDHX Musical Merry-Go-Round Welcomes Sugar Free All-Stars

88.1 KDHX Musical Merry-Go-Round Welcomes Sugar Free All-Stars 88.1 KDHX Musical Merry-Go-Round welcomes Sugar Free All-Stars for a family matinee Sunday, July 27 at Noon. Kids under two are free. $8 advance tickets on sale now. Tickets available at the door for $10. Kids under two are free. For...


July
Thursday
31

Bradford Lee Folk & The Bluegrass Playboys

Bradford Lee Folk & The Bluegrass Playboys KDHX presents Bradford Lee Folk & The Bluegrass Playboys at The Stage, July 31 at 8pm. Tickets available online.   Born in Louisiana and raised in Missouri, Folk remembers watching his Dad pick the country blues on a...


Get Answers!

If you have questions or need to contact KDHX, visit our answers portal at answers.kdhx.org.

Online Users

8 users and 10993 guests online
Sign in with Facebook

SYSTEM: S5 Box

Login/My Account

Sign in with Facebook