Isabel Graw, Tim Griffin, Köln, 2017.
Hardcover in board slipcase, 480 pp., 480 color, 230 b/w illus.
Although Martin Kippenberger (1953–1997) was prolific in many media, it was in painting that his enduring achievements were made. His relationship to the medium was intensified by his feeling that he was working against “a perceived death of painting,” and that producing anything original was an impossibility. One famous instance of his tormented and irreverent attitude to painting was his integration of an all-gray abstract painting by Gerhard Richter (which he had purchased) into the top of a coffee table. The fruit of several years’ labor by Kippenberger’s estate, this first volume of the catalogue raisonné of Kippenberger’s paintings contains details of all works made from 1993 to 1997. The entries for these 225 paintings include catalogue number, title, year, media, dimensions, inscriptions, provenance, exhibitions and bibliography. Each work is reproduced in full color, along with any relevant source materials (where applicable). This volume also contains an overview of unfinished works. Each series or group of works is presented as a separate chapter with its own commentary covering the genesis of the works as well as references to both Kippenberger’s own work and that of other artists. This volume also contains a chronological list of works with black-and-white thumbnails, a chronological list of exhibitions and a bibliography that reflects Kippenberger’s very particular use of the terms “exhibition catalogue,” “artist’s book” and “book.”