Acrylic and oil on canvas
290 x 290 cm / 114 1/8 x 114 1/8 in
‘Untitled’ (2007) is a hypnotic example of Günther Förg’s iconic ‘Spot Paintings’, the last series the artist made before he was taken ill and stopped painting in 2009. The series celebrates the act of painting, drawing on Förg’s earlier painterly practice but reimagining his previous explorations in new and extraordinarily innovative ways. The expressive, dynamic brushstrokes and dabs of colour which make up ‘Untitled’ convey a playful, chromatic harmony.
‘The paintings are like poems instead of constructions; the colours unfold and expose each other, like a line of verse pushes the next line into profile. Sometimes they even rhyme.’—Rudi Fuchs
Developed from the artist’s renowned series of ‘Grid Paintings’, Förg has transformed the previous lattice structures into rhythmic, gestural marks that appear to float across the monumental canvas. Contrasting shades of green and red dominate the bustling composition of intersecting autumnal and pastel hues, which reflect the conceptual principles that underpinned Förg’s practice: a formal purism, a sense of the artwork as object, and an architectural, analytical interest in space.
One of the most significant German artists of the postwar generation, Förg is renowned for his experimental and radical oeuvre that engaged profoundly with the legacies of modernism. In his pioneering cross-disciplinary practice, Förg explored the language of abstraction, appropriating tropes borrowed from modern art and architecture.
Günther Förg was born in 1952 in the region of Allgäu, Germany. His career began in the early 1970s as student at The Academy of Fine Art Munich. During his studies, Förg developed a practice grounded almost exclusively in grey and black monochrome. These early investigations into gray – also called ‘Gitter’ paintings – demonstrate the beginning of a lifelong commitment to conceptualism. As he stated, ‘Grey is nothing: not white, not black. Something in between. Not concerned with the figure. Something free.’ While the artist later incorporated color into his monochrome series, his use of gray represents a neutral foundation from which he conceived his oeuvre.