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Sigmar Polke (1941-2010)

Platen Sigmar Polke mitten in der Luft 1971
PHOTO : Angelika Platen Sigmar Polke (in the air), Düsseldorf, 1971 silver gelatin print on Barytpapier mounted on aluminium; signed, dated and numbered on the back. 120 x 80cm. Edition: 5. Galerie Haas Ag.

Sigmar Polke (1941 – 2010), a German painter who for many recast pop art and revived painting in Europe, passed away on Friday, June 10.

The artist who used Ben-Day dots, old etchings and even potatoes (for sculptures), brought a new vibrancy to painting and art making in the 1980s.  His first New York show at Holly Solomon led what many saw as a fresh and aggressive charge to pictorial expression.  Americans like Julian Schnabel, David Salle and Richard Prince rode the oblique figurative + abstraction train for decades. Much of that owed to the  oftentimes irreverent German artist.  One can see Polke’s influence all over Europe and in the US – a feverish desire to combine everything and squeeze out a biting political juice. Polke was 69.

Click to view The NYT Slide Show of Sigmar Polke’s works.