Brain Food #458

The hidden narrative of life

One work of art can give birth to many others.

Gerhard Richter was known for his photorealistic paintings. The below is a sensual, intimate portrait of his wife, Marianne Eufinger, nicknamed Ema. The painting is the reproduction of a blurry photograph that Richter took of her in 1966, inspired by the Duchamp painting, Nude descending a staircase.

He recreated the blur by sweeping a dry brush across the original paint, while it was still wet. In his attempt to remain faithful to the photograph, he distorted the memory itself.

We interpret art, and reality, as we wish, but it is this very personal and subjective interpretation and recreation of the work of another — or even our own — that reveals the hidden, interconnected narrative of life. Hard to pinpoint, but impossible to resist.


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