Monday, August 16, 2010

nothing other than this

"Gymnast Karin Janz, 15, had been nominated Athlete of the Year in East Germany, where the Cold War propaganda tool of athletic training was an emblem for Soviet triumph (for the East), and personal escape from grinding Soviet repression (for the West). Richter, who had fled Dresden for Düsseldorf, fuses that inherent contradiction with "Leap Into the Void," a famous photograph of French artist Yves Klein appearing to soar out a second story window on tippy toes, which Richter saw in a 1963 Paris gallery exhibition.

The smile on the girl's face seems caught between joy and hysteria, youthful optimism and forced cheer. Forget exalted painterly uplift. A chilly, meditative small masterpiece, "Gymnastics" refuses idealized fantasies of escape -- athletic, artistic or political." LA Times review of from Calder to Warhol:Introducing the Fisher Collection (a completely staggering exhibit).
Gymnastics, 1967 Gerhard Richter

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