Anselm Kiefer

Kunsthalle Tübingen

Although Anselm Kiefer has exhibited his books for some time now, this exhibition is the first to treat them as a distinct body of work. In this overview, which covers the period from 1969–90, the importance of the books becomes apparent. In these works,Kiefer obsessively probes his subjects for their evocative power; he intensifies them, overlaps them, and places them in an allegorical frame of reference as part of his syncretic mythology of catastrophe. Kiefer also tests the affective and semantic capabilities of materials that are derived from natural substances affected by natural or historical destructive processes, such as rust, ashes, coal, mud, tar, sand, earth, clay, and melted lead.

Almost all the books— like the paintings— depend on photographic processes. Even where Kiefer begins with a lead base and does not specifically employ a photograph, he uses light-sensitive chemicals

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