Purple Magazine
— F/W 2008 issue 10

Martin Kippenberger’s Hotel Stationery

VISUAL DIARY: a few of the countless drawings
German artist  
MARTIN KIPPENBERGER(1953−1997) made on hotel stationery 

text by JEFF RIAN

In his short, immoderate life Martin Kippenberger managed to test and probe just about every conceivable style of art making — conceptual, performance, painting, sculpture, collage, video, drawing, and installation. His art parroted his discursive mind and excessive lifestyle, revealing him to be a copious improviser and a consumer of possibilities, rather than the creator of shtick or personal style his artistic persona implied. His most intimate works were his “Hotel Drawings.” He did hundreds of them, on whatever stationery these establishments provided, sketching and doodling, using common writing and drawing implements, expressing the ideas that occupied his mind at particular times. While the hotel drawings refract his rambling life — his globe-hopping exhibition schedule and the multifarious works he would project in them — the inherent quietness of the drawings shows a mind removed from the raucous polemics that defined him, and seems to have brought him back to portraiture, politics, and the reflective self. The drawings also reveal a skill and control that, because of his public brashness, perhaps, his large works never did. Their small scale encouraged the intimacy of the hand’s connection to thought.


Martin Kippenberger: The Problem Perspective; moca, Los Angeles, 9 /21 /2008 — 1 /5 /2009; moma, new York, 3 /1 — 5 /11 /2009.
The show will include a panorama of his work including paintings and sculptures.

[Table of contents]

F/W 2008 issue 10

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