This monograph presents Kiefer's complete work to date, reproduced in full color.
Writing about one of the most important and complex artists of our times requires the erudition, clarity, and broad view of a Daniel Arasse, author of the gorgeously illustrated Anselm Kiefer. Avoiding a straightforward chronological survey, Arasse plunges directly into Kiefer's major themes and the ways they reflect the artist's subtly evolving perspectives on German history, the role of the artist, and the meaning of life. Arasse illuminates Kiefer's use of Jewish kabbalistic symbolism, his relationship to philosophers and writers from Nietzsche to Celan, and the rich trove of metaphor to be found in his use of lead, straw, books, and images of railroad tracks and artists' palettes. Never succumbing to art-speak, Arasse--whose French text has been deftly translated into English--marshals his arguments with lucid elegance. The approximately 400 full-color plates, including full views and close-ups, are magnificent. This is surely one of the major art books of our time. --Cathy Curtis
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