anselm kiefer: il mistero delle cattedrali anselm kiefer: il mistero delle cattedrali
jan 29, 2012

anselm kiefer: il mistero delle cattedrali

‘merkaba’ by anselm kiefer, 2011 lead, steel, rubber, copper piping, plaster, resin, acrylic, salt, pewter and oil paint 49 3/16 x 122 1/16 x 27 15/16 inches all images by ben westoby, courtesy white cube and © the artist

anselm kiefer: il mistero delle cattedrali white cube, london, UK now on until the 26th of february 2012

german-born and france-based artist anselm kiefer presents ‘il mistero delle cattedrali’, a 11,000 square foot installation at the white cube bermondsey gallery in london. the exhibition includes works from various times within the artist’s four decades as a creative force and explores the idea of alchemy. the show is given the name ‘il mistero delle cattedrali’ due to the closely linked subject matter with that of a book in the 1920’s by a french alchemist and esoteric author under the pseudonym fulcanelli by the same title.

many of the featured pieces investigate themes of religion or mythology, current political functions and the chauvinism existent within the period of nazism in his homeland’s history. his mixed media exhibition is comprised of several sculptural and painted works formed from a variety of materials. the grand-scale works include the use of terracotta, oil, rubber, salt, paint, lead, resin, copper, plants and steel in order to convey his apocalyptic vision.  

a detailed view of one of the pewter bowls joined to the bicycle built for three in ‘merkaba’ ‘merkaba’, 2011 lead, steel, rubber, copper piping, plaster, resin, acrylic, salt, pewter and oil paint 49 3/16 x 122 1/16 x 27 15/16 in

‘sprache der vögel’, 1989 ‘il mistero delle cattedrali’, south galleries and 9x9x9, white cube bermondsey, london 9 december 2011 – 26 february 2012

‘dat rosa miel apibus’, 2010-2011 oil, acrylic, terracotta, salt, lead and resin on canvas 129 15/16 x 673 1/4 inches 

‘dat rosa miel apibus’ has a fragility which is enhanced by the his choice and orientation of material upon each works surface. the massive painted work by keifer, having been mostly formed in a neutral to dark color palate, incorporates materials such as lead, dried flowers and broken glass, in order to assist in the expression of his unique artistic language. this results in a hazy, nihilistic, or temporary quality.

detailed view of ‘dat rosa miel apibus’

‘il mistero delle cattedrali’ installation view

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