Der Acker, Georg Baselitz
Georg Baselitz
Der Acker
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Georg Baselitz

Der Acker, 1962

114 x 146 cm
Physical Description
Oil on canvas
Inventory Number
Acquired in 2010 as a gift from Dorette Hildebrand-Staab
On display, 2nd upper level, Old Masters, room 21


About the Work

Two mutilated corpses lie on a battlefield that has been destroyed by fire. Stones and sprouting potatoes are scattered randomly across the earth. The gestural, raw painting awakens associations with the rotting flesh of the tortured bodies, which are marked by suffering. The decay of the subject of the painting tallies with the painting process. Shades of brown dominate the picture and run over into absolute black in the background. The title of the picture alludes to "God's acre", the graveyard, which appears here in a particularly perverted form: this "field" gives birth and devours. Baselitz's radical, dark, atmospheric pictures from the early 1960s reflect the sensibilities of Germany's post-war years.

About the Acquisition

In 2010 the Städel Museum acquired four major works of contemporary German art thanks to a donation by Dorette Hildebrand-Staab. Despite the prevailing opinion at that time, the donor had recognised the significance of Georg Baselitz early on and she encouraged and supported the artist for many years. The four paintings which made their way into the Städel’s holdings through her gift had already been purchased by the patroness of the arts in the 1960s, in part from the artist himself.

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