B.B.O., 1984

Painting, 280.5 x 200.5 cm

Ralf Winkler, known as A.R. Penck, adopted the name of the geologist Albrecht Penck (1858–1945), author of Die Alpen im Eiszeitalter (The Alps in the Ice Age), as a way of making clear that his artistic production was a critique of the ‘ice age’ of the cold war and in order to exhibit anonymously in West Germany. Watched as a dissident under the communist regime, his Neo-Expressionist painting speaks forcefully of grievance and rebellion. He is known for his vibrant use of colour, for his flat figures and the energy of his compositions. Conceived as an arrangement of pictographs and anthropomorphic, totemic forms composed of free and gestural strokes, the artistic production of this painter, sculptor and percussionist reflects the harshness of post-war Germany and, by extension, of the human condition. The mask, the broken forms and the central figure, with its hammer head and the risqué solution of the torso and sex, make a powerful statement.

Technical details

Original title:
Registration number:
Penck, A. R.
Date created:
Date acquired:
MACBA Collection. Government of Catalonia long-term loan
Object type:
Pigment and latex on canvas
280.5 x 200.5 cm (height x width)
MACBA Collection. Government of Catalonia long-term loan. National Collection of Art. Formerly Salvador Riera Collection
© A. R. Penck
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