Oriel Mostyn


03 Dec - 11 Mar 2012

Heroische Sinnbilder, 1969 Anselm Kiefer

This collection of works on paper by one of Germany’s most significant post-war artists is the second exhibition at Mostyn from the ARTIST ROOMS collection.

Perhaps one the most significant and controversial artists of the 20th century, Anselm Kiefer (born 1945), first came to attention in the 1980 Venice Biennale, since when he has become internationally celebrated for his interpretations of the great cultural and political issues at the heart of the modern German, and by extension European, sensibility.

The earliest works on display from the late 1960s attest to the manner in which Kiefer has worked with the conviction that art could heal a traumatized nation and a vexed and divided world. Often through the creation of epic paintings and installations that called up the history of Germany culture, he is one of only a few contemporary artists with a pronounced sense of art’s duty to engage with the past and the ethical questions of the present, and so be in a position to express the possibility of the absolution of guilt through human effort.

Since the 1980s his focus has expanded from that of Germany’s role in civilization to the fate of art and culture in general, opening out to include ideas of national identity and collective memory, but also occult symbolism, theology and mysticism. The exhibition includes more recent works that address some of these themes. In the words of historian Simon Schama, they present ‘a resonant meditation on the instability of built grandeur.’

ARTIST ROOMS On Tour is an inspired partnership with the Art Fund, the fundraising charity for works of art, making the ARTIST ROOMS collection of international contemporary art available to galleries throughout the UK. ARTIST ROOMS is jointly owned by Tate and National Galleries of Scotland and was established through The d’Offay Donation in 2008, with the assistance of the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Scottish and British Governments.

IMAGE: Anselm Kiefer
Heroische Sinnbilder (Heroic Symbols), 1969
Tate and National Galleries of Scotland. Acquired jointly through The d’Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2008
© Anselm Kiefer 1969

Associated Events / Workshops

25 Feb

25/02/2012 2PM FREE

To celebrate the Anselm Kiefer ARTIST ROOMS exhibition Mostyn presents a unique illustrated conversation between Anthony d’Offay, the founder of ARTIST ROOMS and Amy Dickson, the Collection’s Managing Curator. This is an un-missable opportunity to hear first hand from one of the most influential art dealers in the country. It will allow the audience a unique insight into a little of the history of the collection of which the Kiefer exhibition is part, and of Anthony’s relationship with this important artist.

The event also provides a privileged opportunity to learn of new developments to ARTIST ROOMS. It provides visitors to the exhibition an opportunity to ask questions both about the works, the collection in which they are set, and more generally about the collection of art today and the nature of the philanthropy associated with it.

04 Feb

04/02/2012 2pm FREE ADMISSION

Iwan Bala and Osi Rhys Osmond, both artists and writers, discuss land, memory and history in Kiefer’s work and how this relates to contemporary art in Wales.



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