Sigmar Polke - C-Mann
Poster paint on creased and torn packing paper. Approx. 99 x 74.5 cm. - Traces of studio and a few small professionally restored tears as well as firmly mounted to support card.
“Polke's drawings from the 60s clearly testify to his intentions to instil new life into the language of artistic discourse and to expand its range of effect by inventing a seemingly inartistic jargon that contradicts and ridicules aesthetic and social conventions. […] The radical expression, which Polke developed in the 60s, attests to […] his sympathy for the culturally incapacitated segment of the population. At the same time, it addresses the audience of avant-garde. His artistic discourse, based on rudimentary paintings and deprecated techniques, is placed so precisely on the border of the so-called higher and lower art that the observer, whether he belongs to the initiates or not, hesitates, pausing in the moment of recognition, not knowing how he should react. The insecurity and instability formed part of Polke's strategy, of course. By transposing the codes of pop culture into the ethereal areas of the higher cultures, he consciously undermined the accepted criteria and our conveniently attuned reactions. And it is the introduction of these paintings, appearing socially and aesthetically inacceptable and being articulated in a tone that represents such transgression, with which he restored the social dimension and function of art”. (Margit Rowell, Strategien der Subversion, in: Margit Rowell (ed.), Michael Semff und Bice Curiger, Sigmar Polke. Arbeiten auf Papier 1963- 1974, exhib.cat. Hamburger Kunsthalle, Ostfildern 1999, pp.21-22.)
New York 1999 (The Museum of Modern Art), Hamburg (Kunsthalle), Sigmar Polke, Arbeiten auf Papier 1963-1974, exhib.cat.no.3, p.39 with colour illus.
San Francisco 1990/1991 (Museum of Modern Art), Washington D.C. 1991 (Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institution), Chicago (Museum of Contemporary Art), New York 1991/1992 (The Brooklyn Museum), Sigmar Polke, exhib.cat.no.79 (label verso)