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We Were a Kind of Museum Piece
  • © VG Bild-Kunst, Bonn
  • Repro: Kai-Annett Becker
    • Wolf Vostell (1932 - 1998)

  • TitleWe Were a Kind of Museum Piece
  • Date1964
  • CategoryGemälde
  • MaterialSiebdruck und Sprühdosenfarbe auf Leinwandfoto
  • Dimensions120 x 450 cm (Bildmaß)
  • Signaturesigniert und datiert unten links: "Vostell 64"
  • Inventory NumberBG-M 0351/77
  • CreditlineErworben aus dem Museumsfonds beim Senator für Kulturelle Angelegenheiten, Berlin, 1980
  • On DisplayYes

This work by Wolf Vostell is based on text and image fragments from mass media such as magazines. He enlarged the fragments as screen prints and printed them onto canvas. The title originates from an article about the Auschwitz trials; the images document political events during the Cold War. On the East-Berlin side a Soviet tank is being peppered with stones during the uprising of 17th June 1953, and a policeman escapes over barbed wire during the building of the Wall on 13th August 1961. The West-Berlin and American side is revealed with a demonstration for press freedom in October 1962, racial unrest in the USA, and the murder of the Kennedy assassin Lee Harvey Oswald on 24.11.1963. Large areas have been painted over in wild expressive gestures using black and white, and subsequently spray-painted in red and yellow; a reference to the German national colours. The work is based on Vostell’s principle of dè-coll/age: parts of the original image set-up have been obliterated in order to accentuate others and so stimulate the viewer’s imagination.