b. 1932
  • Germany
Turnover 2023
$USD 190.558.888
Record Sale
$USD 46.306.782
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Gerhard Richter grew up in East Germany, initially training as a mural painter before attending the Dresden Academy of Fine Arts. In 1961, he made the daring decision to escape to West Germany, a move that would significantly shape his artistic trajectory. Throughout the 1960s, Richter explored a variety of styles, including Pop Art, abstract painting, and photorealism. His “Blur” series, featuring hazy and abstracted images, garnered attention for its departure from traditional representation. Richter’s interest in both personal and collective memory is evident in his “October 18, 1977” series, which depicts the Baader-Meinhof gang members who died in prison.

His “Color Chart” paintings challenge the notion of color harmony, while his “Abstract Paintings” question the role of gesture and expression in art. He even delved into photorealism, producing works that blur the lines between painting and photography. His “Atlas” project, begun in the late 1960s, consists of a vast collection of photographs, sketches, and other materials that offer a glimpse into his creative process and inspiration. This ongoing project serves as a visual diary, capturing his artistic evolution. Richter’s contribution to art history is his exploration of the relationship between representation and abstraction, questioning the reliability of images and the subjective nature of perception.

His “Cage” series, created by dragging a tool across a wet surface, challenges the artist’s control over the outcome, emphasizing chance and process. In recent years, Richter has continued to engage with a variety of themes, including politics, memory, and the fragility of human experience. His “Birkenau” series, named after the infamous Auschwitz concentration camp, tackles the moral complexities of representing traumatic history. With a career spanning decades, Gerhard Richter’s impact on contemporary art is immeasurable. His willingness to constantly question artistic norms and his dedication to pushing the boundaries of creativity make him a trailblazer in the art world.


Record Sale

Gerhard RICHTER (1932)
Abstraktes bild (1986)

Lot # 37
300.5 x 250.5 cm
Hammer price: $ 41,142,600 (£ 27,000,000 )
Price including buyer’s premium: $ 46,306,758 (£ 30,389,000 )
Estimate: $ 21,333,200 – $ 30,476,000 (£ 14,000,000 – £ 20,000,000 )
Contemporary Art
10 feb 2015
London, United Kingdom.

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