Bathers

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83501 Gerhard Richter-Badende (Bathers) 1967 As I noted in my previous post on the extraordinaryGerman artist Gerhard Richter (seeThe Reader) his constant re-invention, technical mastery and breath of subject matter has created a body of work without parallel in contemporary art.

He has also shown an constant engagement with and re-visioning ofthe work of the Old Masters, including Vermeer, Titian and Ingres. Badende, featuredabove, takes as itsstarting point Ingres’sThe Turkish Bath, one of the most sensual and erotic paintings ever, while Kleine Badendebelow references the same artist’sThe Small Bather.Grey is to Richter what blue was to Yves Klein (Dreams of Desire 48 (Blue), however the smudgedobscurity of Badende actually accentuates the erotic possibilities inherent in the scene. Richter’s third wife Sabine Moritz is the model for Kleine Badende, painted in the blurry photo-realistic style that he is justifiably famous for.

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