The exhibition shows for the first time the long-term loan of the Gerhard Richter Kunststiftung to the Neue Nationalgalerie.
The central work of the exhibition is the cycle "Birkenau" (2014), consisting of four large-format abstract paintings. It is the result of a long and deep examination by Gerhard Richter of the Holocaust and its representability. The works are based on four photographs from the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp, which the artist transferred to four canvases using charcoal and oil paint, then gradually painted over them in abstract. With each layer of paint, the painted pattern disappeared a little more, until finally it was no longer visible. The work also includes a large, four-part mirror placed opposite the four Birkenau paintings, creating another layer of reflection.
In addition to the Birkenau cycle, nearly 90 other works by the artist from several creative phases since the 1980s will be on view, including "Occupied House" (1989), "4900 Colors" (2007), and "Strip" (2013/2016). A large group also includes works from the important group of overpainted photographs, in which Richter addresses the field of tension between photography and painting on a new level.
The presentation was created in close collaboration with the artist. In the future, it is planned to present Gerhard Richter's works in ever new contexts through curatorial and artistic interventions by artists from various fields.
More information about the exhibition can be found here