Obrist - O'Brist

Author Richter, Gerhard / Obrist, Hans Ulrich
Date 2009
Publisher Verlag der Buchhandlung Walther König, Köln
Details Softcover, 184 pages
ISBN 9783865606921
Language English

Gerhard Richter dedicated this artist's book to the art historian Hans Ulrich Obrist who he has worked with for many years.

The book comprises of three main elements: photographs showing Hans Ulrich Obrist, partly painted over, and text fragments of interviews that Obrist conducted with Richter. These elements are juxtaposed with photographs showing details of Richter’s paintings, depicting predominantly pastose colour application or structures of paint.

Randomness appears to have played a part in how the three elements are arranged, and the text fragments have been positioned with the help of a random generator. There are two front covers on either side of the book, which encourage the reader to start from either side. In keeping with the principle of randomness and shifts in structure, the pictures and texts in the catalogue do not follow a consistent direction.

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Staatliche Kunstsammlungen, Dresden


Softcover, 118 pages






Artist's Books


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