Gerhard Richter. Eis

Author Richter, Gerhard
Date 2011
Publisher Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, Köln
Details Hardback, 142 pages
ISBN 9783865609243
Language German

The artist's book Gerhard Richter. Eis shows photographs taken by Gerhard Richter on a trip to Greenland in 1972: snowy mountains, ice floes, the vastness of the sea laden with chunks of ice, unspoiled nature. Some of the motifs can be found in Richter’s subsequent work, e.g. Iceberg in Mist [CR: 496-1]. The photographs are juxtaposed with texts which are taken from the 1871 edition of the Brockhaus encyclopaedia and relate to Greenland.

The two covers are indicative of the book’s artistic design; inside, the texts have neither a beginning nor an end, and photographs and texts are partly printed upside down. It is noteworthy that the photographs and texts are always printed in the same size, 8.5 x 12.9 cm, an area which has sometimes been left blank.

The book affords the viewer the possibility to trace this subjective experience of Greenland’s ice in a visual way, completed by neutrally communicated knowledge from the encyclopaedia.

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Series 'Schriften des Gerhard Richter Archiv Dresden ; vol. 11'

Gerhard Richter. Bücher 311 Mentioned: pp. 93

Gerhard Richter. Bücher is the first publication that exclusively addresses Gerhard Richter’s artist’s books. Starting with a brief introduction to the history of the genre, Dieter Schwarz proceeds to analyse Richter’s diverse publications, which don’t necessarily stand out with extravagant covers, but are versatile in dealing with different subjects and their presentation. The aspect of reproduction and the processing of graphical material, which plays a crucial role in Richter’s works in general, can also be found in most of his books. Schwarz adjudges Eis and Wald a special status, as they are not derived from image details like War Cut or Patterns, but consist of independent series of pictures.


In the interview with Richter, Hans Ulrich Obrist, who also collaborated with him on a number of books, discusses the artist’s books chronologically and raises detailed questions about the development and context of all of Richter’s publications. The interviewer talks to Richter about his ideals and guiding principles in painting. Obrist is mainly interested in the structure and arrangement of the books, which demonstrate a carefully conceived composition.

More Details
Gerhard Richter. Bücher Obrist, Hans Ulrich / Schwarz, Dieter / Richter, Gerhard / Elger, Dietmar 2013