Sunday, 1 July 2012

Gerhard Richter, Pompidou Centre

I tried, honestly I did, but I simply didn't enjoy this one. Now in Paris after London and Berlin, Panorama is a survey exhibition of his work since 1962 (when he destroyed all previous work) starting with his paintings from photographs (as in the portrait of his daughter, above).

I think my single biggest problem is that I found his abstract painting building up paint in layers generally unappealing for to its colour palate - yellow and green are just not for me.  Only one of these did I enjoy - Forest - which was mainly blues. I've been wondering about why this is. What makes the brain favour one set of hues over others? How does this get wired in? Answers on a postcard please.

Grey is a key colour for Richter and there is a whole room dedicated to such, but it lacks conviction for me being neither light (white) or its absence (black). The purpose of the huge mirror and most of the glass pieces either baffled me or struck me a pretty banal. At least the kids had fun making faces.

The series entitled 18 October 1977 about the Bader Meinhof was interesting and I do say yes to the triptych of Ulrike Meinhof portraits from newspaper photographs. Other political work includes a portrait of his Nazi uncle and a surprising small painting of September 2001. The chromatic pieces are OK, but not exactly ground breaking. 

The most recent work is from 2010, Aladin, a series of six paintings on glass which was for me the best in the show. Go if you must spend 13 Euros (gasp). It's on until 26 September.

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