Systems: Felt Works and Paintings is a solo exhibition by the German painter A.R. Penck, which showcases the paintings, works on paper and a unique group of felt sculptures. Throughout his career, the artist has depicted human struggles stemming from man-made political, scientific, and social systems.
Born in Dresden, he witnessed Molotov cocktails in his city as a child, an experience that shaped his life course and development. At the beginning of his career, the artist lived in the authoritarian environment of the GDR, and he had limited access to materials. During this time, he created a simplified graphic vocabulary derived from language, mathematics, cybernetics, information systems, and behavioral theory. Using his own dictionary of signs and symbols, the artist challenges the relationship between man and society. While Penke's work stemmed from post-World War II ideology and the repressive political state of East Germany, the visual language he invented was universal, timeless, and contemporary.
In addition to major paintings and works on paper from the artist's more than 50-year career, the exhibition includes a rare collection of felt sculptures. The characteristic symbols and forms expressed in his paintings are translated into sculptural forms in primary colors.
Another highlight is the huge painting tskrie VIII from 1984. The title tskrie is an anagram for the word "strike", the same year as the miners' strike in northern England when Penck lived in London.