Anselm Kiefer

Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam

The success that Anselm Kiefer has experienced over the last few years both inside and outside Germany made this exhibition of new and recent work by Kiefer into a media event. In the newspaper articles and “exclusive” interviews that preceded the opening, Kiefer was portrayed as a visionary painter, strongly connected to German history and mythology, who also wanted to be regarded at least partly as a conceptual artist.

There is no doubt that he sees his art as an instrument for communicating more than just an esthetic message. And indeed, whereas in previous exhibitions his work seemed to be dominated by his personal confrontation with German history, it looks as if Kiefer has expanded the scope of his discussion. In addition to demystifying historical taboos, he raises the question of how to render human experience through the medium of painting, a theme that has appeared frequently in

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