It is 31 years ago that i saw a work by Kiefer for the first time I and was really impressed . I remember the occasion….the occasion the Anselm Kiefer exhibition at the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam. Grey, sombre , large paintings with scenes that reminded of war, devastation and ruins . Later i learned that the German history and the Holocaust were main themes Kiefer always used in his works. The history of Germany being one of the main subjects in his extremely large paintings. The Stedelijk Museum bought one of the paintings for its collection. “Innenraum” is a large painting ( 280 x 311 cm.) , but small compared to other Kiefer works.
The exhibition was a great succes and since i encountered several other Kiefers in museums. One stands out, impressive and it’s size is overwhelming. ( almost 10 meters in length) and is a must see whenever you visit the North of Spain.
Only with Wind, Time, and Sound (Nur mit Wind, mit Zeit und mit Klang), 1997
Acrylic and emulsion on canvas
473 x 944 x 22 cm
Guggenheim Bilbao Museoa
( the following text comes from the Art Story site)
It is the Anselm Kiefer’s monumental, often confrontational canvases were groundbreaking at a time when painting was considered all but dead as a medium. The artist is most known for his subject matter dealing with German history and myth, particularly as it relates to the Holocaust. These works forced his contemporaries to deal with Germany’s past in an era when acknowledgment of Nazism was taboo. Kiefer incorporates heavy impasto and uncommon materials into his pieces, such as lead, glass shards, dried flowers, and strands of hay, many of which reference various aspects of history and myth, German and otherwise. Influenced by his contemporaries Joseph Beuys and Georg Baselitz, as well as by postwar tendencies in Abstract Expressionism and Conceptual art, Kiefer is considered part of the Neo-Expressionist movement, which diverged from Minimalism and abstraction to develop new representational and symbolic languages.