PRINT February 2003

Stephen Prina

It was taken as a given that Kippenberger was a prototypical German bad boy and that he was the eye of the storm. Upon closer examination, it’s much more systematic. I almost resist using that term because there are very rigid ideas about what constitutes the systematic these days. In a text I wrote on Kippenberger for the MAK Center for Art and Architecture in Los Angeles, I refer to Piero Manzoni’s Base of the World. I think that Martin was engaged in a similar project. Everything was fodder for his work. This stance was not opportunistic; it was a profound aspect of his work that everything needed to be fodder, the idea that categorical distinctions were no longer useful within art practice. He could basically absorb anything into his work, especially in the last years when there was an acceleration of production. As far as I understand, it was a self-conscious strategy; he wanted to

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