L'atelier de la peintrice. Allégorie réelle déterminant une phase de sept années de ma vie artistique dans la République de Berlin, 2000

The Woman Painter's Studio. Real Allegory which Determines a Seven-Year Period in My Artistic Life in the Berlin Republic, 2000
Installation, 76 x 42 x 43 cm

The complete title of this work relates it to the picture by Gustave Courbet. The latter created L'Atelier du Peintre (1855) as a "real allegory" of painting. The artist created a context and made it intelligible, developing the true allegory that summarised seven years of his artistic and personal life. Courbet painted himself as a central figure of the composition in his studio, surrounded by friends such as Baudelaire, and also with some of his enemies. In the middle distance he immortalised representatives of various liberation movements like Bakunin. Courbet's canvas reveals the political implications of his position as an artist, the profound connection between the autonomy of the artist and his political commitment.
Likewise, 150 years later, Creischer, under the pseudonym of Alice Ohneland (Alicia Without Country), uses "real allegory" as a basis for planning the power structure of the "Republic of Berlin". Creischer chooses the Courbet work as an historical paradigm of all the debates that emerged in the 1990s about art and politics. The artist portrays groups of people who are representatives of the different facets of German life and, like Courbet, her friend the poet Sabeth Buchmann. Creischer doesn't portray herself as a central figure of the composition, but appears instead wielding a magnifying glass and examining an illustration of Berlin's Siegessaüle (Victory Column): as a reflection of her own perception, the image in the magnifying glass is that of the Vendôme Column, demolished in 1871 by the Paris Communards, who included Courbet himself. In her imagination the artist plays with the idea of pulling down the Berlin Siegessaüle, a gift of the French government's for the help provided by the Prussian military in the defeat of the Paris Commune.
Realised on transparent material, leaving some lines unpainted, with the help of a projector the work creates images of light embodying figures from the tale of legendary magician Dr. Invisible, who made rabbits appear and disappear from his hat. This installation was created by Alice Creischer as part of the exhibition by Roger Buergel and Ruth Noack, Things We Don't Understand (Generali Foundation, Vienna, 2000), with which they sought to launch a new discussion of the idea of artistic autonomy.

Technical details

Original title:
L'atelier de la peintrice. Allégorie réelle déterminant une phase de sept années de ma vie artistique dans la République de Berlin
Registration number:
Creischer, Alice
Date created:
Date acquired:
MACBA Collection. MACBA Foundation
Object type:
Acrylic and collage on polyethylene, painter's easel, touch-up table and flashlight
76 x 42 x 43 cm (height x width x depth)
MACBA Collection. MACBA Foundation. Work purchased thanks to María Entrecanales
© Alice Creischer, VEGAP, Barcelona
It has accessibility resources:

The MACBA Collection features Catalan, Spanish and international art and, although it includes works from the 1920s onwards, its primary focus is on the period between the 1960s and the present.

For more information on the work or the artist, please consult MACBA's Library. To request a loan of the work, please write to colleccio [at] macba.cat.

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Alice Creischer  "L'atelier de la peintrice. Allégorie réelle déterminant une phase de sept années de ma vie artistique dans la République de Berlin", 2000


Son[i]a #55 Bartomeu Marí and Alice Creischer
It could be my bedroom (or something similar to it). Even the same technical characteristics: all the walls and volumes constructed in this module of raw canvas for painters to measure me and measure ourselves.
Pep Agut