40 х 53.75 х 2.4 in. cm.
Imi Knoebel’s “Gelb Gelb” (Yellow Yellow, 2006) presents a classic example of the artist’s highly sought after minimalist paintings. Featuring the artist’s signature juxtaposition and layering of pure, saturated color to create geometric abstractions with aluminum and plastic foil, Knoebel’s exceptional investigation of color takes on a uniquely three dimensional form, with bold planes of yellow bringing an architectural dimension to the typically flat surface of a painting. Employing aluminum plates as both the structure for his work as well as the color itself, Knoebel seeks to disassociate the painting from the more romanticized material of canvas or panel in favor of an industrial aluminum support. By contrasting the two yellow rectangles with thin strips of blue and red, “Gelb Gelb” creates a context to express the color yellow in a vibrant new way that is free of narration, resulting in a pure pictorial experience.
Imi Knoebel was born on December 31, 1940 in Dessau, Germany, spent his childhood in Dresden, and moved to Mainz with his family in 1950. From 1962-64, he studied a course based on Laszlo Moholy-Nagy and Johannes Itten’s pre-Bauhaus teachings. After becoming fascinated with artist Joseph Beuys, Knoebel transferred to the Dusseldorf Art Academy in 1964, where, along with Blinky Pallermo, he stood out as one of Beuy’s most promising students. Knoebel created his first major work in 1968, titled "Raum 19" (named after his classroom 19, which Beuys had given to his students). Already an expert in the relationship between space, structure, and color, Knoebel became more and more indebted to Kasmir Malevich and his revolutionary ideas of reductive painting. After working in a number of series, Knoebel began to use color in 1974, with his first major exploration of color being “24 Colors—for Blinky” (1977), an epic series of monochromatic works created soon after Blinky Pallermo’s death, now in the collection of the Dia Art Foundation. The nature of Knoebel’s work places him at the border between painting and sculpture, engaging both the environment and the spectator. His work “24 Colors—for Blinky” is currently on view at the Dia, Beacon, and recent solo exhibitions include a major retrospective at the Hamburger Banhof in Berlin, Germany; the Kunsthalle Baden-Baden in Baden-Baden, Germany, the Deutsche Guggenheim in Berlin, Germany; the Dia Art Foundation at the Dan Flavin Institute in Bridgehampton, NY; and the Henry Moore Institute in Leeds, England.
Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY
Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, CA
Dia Beacon, Beacon, NY
Hamburger Banhof, Berlin, Germany
Kunstmuseum St. Gallen, St. Gallen, Switzerland
Centres Pompidou, Paris, France
Burgundy FRAC, Burgundy, France
Fotomuseum Winterthur, Winterthur, Switzerland
Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Dusseldorf, Germany
Rijksmuseum Twenthe, Enschede, the Netherlands
Museu de Arte Contemporânea, Portugal
Malmö Konsthall, Malmo, Sweden
Bonnefantenmuseum Masstricht, Masstricht, the Netherlands