'Berlin Wall Series - Indra'
4,000 to - 6,000 USD
Property from the Collection of Dr. Joseph D. Lichtenberg
'Berlin Wall Series - Indra'
Cibachrome print, signed, titled, dated, and editioned '2/6' in ink on the reverse, framed, 1986-88
image: 30 by 44 ¼ in. (76.2 by 112.4 cm.)
frame: 37 ⅜ by 51 ¼ in. (94.9 by 130.2 cm.)
Please note the colors and shades in the online catalogue illustration may vary depending on screen settings. This large Cibachrome print is in generally very good condition. The colors appear bright and saturated with no signs of fading. The lower right margin edge is cockled. There are occasional fingerprints in the black margins and insignificant soiling on the reverse.
The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colors and shades which are different to the lot's actual color and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation. The condition report is a statement of opinion only. For that reason, the condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS ONLINE CONDITION REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE/BUSINESS APPLICABLE TO THE RESPECTIVE SALE.
Leland Rice, a self-described ‘visual archeologist,’ began photographing the Berlin Wall in 1983, returning each year to document its ever-evolving surface of imagery and text until its fall in November 1989. The artist commented:
‘Accumulated over many years, countless graffiti had turned the Wall into a semantic playground full of forceful messages. I gradually realized that I no longer could relate to the Wall as just a physically tangible medieval barrier symbolizing the ideological division of Europe. Certainly the Wall did exist for divisive reasons, but now it took on another purpose for me - that of a creative catalyst. And, since walls had long been a primary subject of my work as an artist, I felt deeply compelled to photograph it.’ (Leland Rice, as quoted in Up Against It: Photographs of the Berlin Wall, p. 114)
Indeed, photographing walls in various forms had been a particular focus for Rice. In the mid-1970s, he repeatedly photographed vacant interiors, which he titled Wall Sites. By the late 1970s he documented the walls in painters’ studios where the traces and run-offs from canvases accumulated.
Rice’s Berlin Wall photographs capture the transitory mash-ups of texts, poetry, pictograms, and expletives that we now read as a visual archive of the Cold War era. In the sliver of wall shown in the present work, Rice recorded a roster of names (Alex, Olaf, Femke, Jasper, and Indra, among others); a profile of a face drawn with yellow spray paint and finished with menacing red teeth; a Cheshire-like cat sketched in white chalk; and a stenciled figure of a runner carrying a torch. Other images and text are completely obscured by the layers drawn on top of them, a palimpsest that cannot be unraveled.
Rice’s work is in the collections of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles; the Art Institute Chicago; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art; the Smithsonian American Art Museum; and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.