Burroughs Adder, Claes Oldenburg
Claes Oldenburg
Burroughs Adder
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Claes Oldenburg

Burroughs Adder, 1965

355 x 427 mm
Physical Description
Black chalk and watercolour on wove paper
Inventory Number
Object Number
17907 Z
Acquired in 2019 as a bequest from Ulrike Crespo from the Karl Ströher Collection
Can be presented in the study room of the Graphische Sammlung (special opening hours)


About the Work

In 1962, Oldenburg began defamiliarizing everyday objects by negating the solidity of their material: he made typewriters, drum sets, and pieces of cake ultra large and as soft as cushions. In 1964/65 he conceived of something similar for a Burroughs adding machine. Using chalk and watercolours, he portrayed the device close up, thus lending it a monumental quality, and in loose, rather soft forms that wryly disclaim the object’s hardness.

About the Acquisition

The Städel Museum has the photographer, psychotherapist, philanthropist, and long-time Frankfurt resident Ulrike Crespo (1950–2019) to thank for more than ninety works ranging from classical modernism to American pop art. The paintings, drawings, and prints by Wassily Kandinsky, Otto Dix, Oskar Schlemmer, Max Ernst, Jean Dubuffet, Cy Twombly, and others originally belonged to the holdings of her grandfather, the Darmstadt-based industrialist Karl Ströher (1890–1977), who amassed an extensive art collection after World War II.

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