Follow Our Journey: The Lone German

Anselm Kiefer, <em>Untitled</em>, 1980–86, oil, acrylic, emulsion, shellac, lead, charcoal, and straw on photograph, mounted on canvas with stones, lead, and steel cable, various dimensions, Purchased with funds from the State of North Carolina, W. R. Valentiner, and various donors, by exchange, © 2009 Anselm Kiefer

Anselm Kiefer, Untitled, 1980–86, oil, acrylic, emulsion, shellac, lead, charcoal, and straw on photograph, mounted on canvas with stones, lead, and steel cable, various dimensions, Purchased with funds from the State of North Carolina, W. R. Valentiner, and various donors, by exchange, © 2009 Anselm Kiefer

Silence. Stillness. Solitude. Finally. It won’t last–who knows what they have in store for me?–but it’s a relief for now.

I’m alone in my gallery, my very own gallery. That is, if you don’t count the Shapiro. And I don’t. Stella was carried out to God-knows-where weeks ago. That one was just too horribly cheerful. And the Katz, don’t get me started…the constant small-talk, the party chatter. The Albers, the gentle Albers, I do miss. Does that surprise you? I hope to see him again. It is heartening for a moment to think how something so precise, perhaps so cold and aloof at first glance, can be so moving and warm.

All that remains are empty walls–save for Stella’s hefty shelf–and industrial rolling ladders to nowhere. May I have one? My leaden ladder was stolen away soon after the crowds left, as were my heavy hanging stones and funnel. They are just objects, just facts, solid things that corrode, bend, gather dust; they buckle, crack and fade in the weather; they develop patina. Merely material. And yet we fill them with import, with symbolism and metaphor and stories. Lead, for instance, leads us down a rabbit-hole of associations: heavy, slow, poison, alchemy, bullets, batteries, planets, radiation, sculpture. Layers of meaning and history and imagination are encrusted on things that matter. But I shouldn’t go on like a bore.

These are thoughts that fill my head when you are gone. Anselm used to put some of us outside for a spell, to feel the rain and sun and be changed, forgotten or transformed. Perhaps that’s what’s next. Time will tell.

One Comment

  1. Michael Heaney
    Posted November 12, 2009 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

    The Katz … don’t get me started. Please sell it to pay down the state’s debt.

One Trackback

  1. [...] newest friend, Kiefer, is a most amusing soul Sour dour and yet so young He reminds us of ourselves As we were centuries [...]

Post a Comment

Your email is never shared. Required fields are marked *

*
*