Over 25 years ago, Heliod Spiekermann began collecting art by her contemporaries, becoming a deeply involved, passionate, and acute observer especially of the rise of Cologne as an art center in the 1980s. Getting to know artists through extensive studio visits and as patients in her dentist’s chair, she has gathered a distinguished personal collection which provides an ideal starting point for looking back at the art of a decade that is currently undergoing renewed scrutiny and reevaluation.
This small exhibition of generous loans presents five major paintings and sculptures by Georg Baselitz, Georg Herold, Albert Oehlen, and Rosemarie Trockel. The focus is strongly on the individual works, though these artists can be seen as standing for particular tendencies of the 1980s: Baselitz for the revival of expressive art making marked by the hand and persona of the artist; Oehlen and Herold for a spirit of neo-Dadaist skepticism about art, style, and ideology; and Trockel for the emergence of a rigorously intelligent art prompted by feminist concerns.
Organized by Peter Nisbet, Daimler-Benz Curator of the Busch-Reisinger Museum.
This exhibition was made possible by the Museum’s Charles L. Kuhn Fund and could not have taken place without the generous cooperation of the collector, to whom the Busch-Reisinger Museum is enormously grateful.