When I first saw that lithography from Ponyhof painter Céline Felga, I didn’t immediately recognised Anselm Kiefer’s famous installation at the Berlin Hamburger Bahnhof Volkszählung. I initially thought it was a library. This tribute to Anselm makes it even more interesting. And just in time to let you know that the exhibition of Anselm Keifer’s painting has been prolonged in Antwerp’s museum of fine arts until 27 March 2011. Aleksandra Eriksson Pogorzelska reports for Ponhof on the exhibition.
To say the least, the name of Anselm Kiefer is in vogue. When not praised by art critics for his solo shows at museums and galleries all over the world (in autumn 2010, he exhibited among other at Lousiana, Denmark, the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, London and the Gagosian gallery, New York), he makes it to the gossip pages for hanging out with the troubled but terrific Courtney Love. He is everywhere – but at KMSKA in Antwerp only until 27 March, where twenty-two monumental canvases, combining different techniques such as painting, sculpture and set design, deal with the memory of the Second World War and other failures of humanity, as seen through the prism of myths, history, philosophy and literature. One example is the painting “Lilith”, made more than a decade before 9/11 and showing Ground Zero reduced to ashes. According to Jewish mythology, the dark-haired Lilith was created by God at the same time as Adam, therefore considering herself to be his equal; when Adam tried to subjugate his first wife, she walked out of him and Paradise, and has since been seen as the incarnation of evil forces in the world. May one found one’s fame on the Holocaust (Kiefer is sometimes criticised for having devoted fifty years of artistic work to one, non-ordinary topic) and what are the reasons for Lilith’s illfame, are some questions for the visitor to dwell on.
by Aleksandra Eriksson Pogorzelska, Ponyhof Gallery