Günther Förg: Twelve Lead Paintings


Exhbition catalogue, edited by Bärbel Grässlin, Uli Knecht
texts (German/English) by Britta Schröder, Max Wechsler
36 p with 20 coloured illustrations
350 x 250 mm, stitched with dustjacket

ISBN 978-3-86442-049-8

39,80 €

Günther Förg – his last publication

This publication presents for the very first time twelve large-format lead paintings by Günther Förg (each composition 240 x 160 cm) from 1989. Due to the high technical quality photographic print, the large, full-page reproductions measuring 31 x 21 cm respectively, convey an immediate, hitherto scarcely achievable impression of the effect the originals convey. This is because, as Max Wechsler puts it in his text, »the special ­attraction of the lead paintings, of course, resides not least in the specific materiality and the unique substance of this rather unusual painted surface. Then there is the special colour of lead, which, oscillating between iridescent gray and blue, seems like a darkly threaten­ing storm with its infinite grada­tions of gloom that coalesces in a fine play upon natural and artificial patinas. These seemingly organic surfaces are countered by the painterly application of the straight geometrical figurations of the sections. This subtle opposition gives rise to a dynamic tension in which the systematic compositional programs and more intuitively developed examination of the ­relationships between the colours find expression in their highest concentration. This certainly has to do with the fact that the application of the paint on lead manifestly flows almost without resistance, which in turn flatters Günther Förg’s notorious penchant for speed. One reason for this rapid flow lies in the fact that this surface is absolutely non-absor­b­ent and the paint merely gathers on the surface in the way it is ­deposited.« Britta Schroeder, the second author in the book, captures the overwhelming effect of these simple colour field divisions – ­caused by a rapidly flowing, liquid paint – as a closed universe: »The colour doesn’t assert itself outwardly, but sticks to the surface as if it to a magnet. In many of them, you are afraid that they will swallow up parts of the painting should you fix your eyes on them for too long. But to make up for it, you get to tumble into a vortex of colour, which picks you up as if you were falling headlong into a black hole.«