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The Secret Life of Plants

anselm_kiefer

For the first time in its five years of existence, the Baluard Museu d’Art Modern i Contemporani de Palma has put on a truly significant art exhibition: Anselm Kiefer – Obres de la col·lecció Grothe.

Anselm Kiefer is the very epitome of a serious artist. His work tends towards the monumental and the esoteric. He tackles some big German issues: collective memory, mourning, the weight of history, the fate of the earth itself.

The exhibition consists of twelve large paintings and one sculpture, all produced between 1981 and 2008, demonstrating the artist’s broad spectre. The presentation’s centre piece occupies a 22 m long wall: The secret life of plants is a piece assembled of 13 parts, painted with oil and acrylic on lead, wire, and plaster coated branches on canvas, plus a taxidermic large goose for effect. With this monumental piece of art measuring approx. 390 x 2100 cm, the museum demonstrates its architectural drawbacks: the viewer wants to stand as close as possible to study the overabundance of details as well as retreat a long way to be able to take in the enormity of the work’s entirety. However, the long and narrow main exhibition halls do not allow one to move back as far as one would wish. It may be best in the circumstances to view The secret life of plants from the small platform on the museum’s first floor, which is from where I took this photo.

Nevertheless, the artist’s skilled efforts with the artistic material plus his choice of themes and topics make this exhibition an important and vital art event, not to be missed.

Baluard Museu d’Art Modern i Contemporani de Palma is open Tuesday to Sunday, 10h00 – 20h00. Admission is 6 €, unless you go on a Friday, when you can pay as you please. A lush catalogue has been published in Catalan, with translations in Castilian, English and German. The exhibition will be on view until August 30th.

The photo was taken in Palma de Mallorca, Balears, Spain. The date: January 31st, 2009. The time was 11:30:45.

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