ill. 5.31 b (set: 5.31)
Gerhard Richter (1932-) 格哈德•里希特
art original, collotype
internet file, black-and-white; original source: collotype on white lightweight cardboard, 83.9 cm x 59.3 cm.
Mao, 1968 by Gerhard Richter, (DACHS 2009 Mao by Gerhard Richter), Heidelberg catalogue entry
Gerhard Richter 2012
Mao Portrait, Western reception, defacing, Mao past, Mao present
Mao, 1968 by Gerhard Richter (Gerhard Richter: Mao 格哈德•里希特: 毛)
Yan Peiming's image (ill. 5.31a) reminds a European audience of a 1968 counterpart seen here by Gerhard Richter (1932-) who depicts Mao through a haze which equally disfigures, better, transfigures him. Both his and Yan Peiming’s image point to the complicated relation between our sensual perception of reality—which is always a perception limited—and reality itself (it is “not like that”). The “defacing,” almost abstract manner in which the face is designed in both cases makes it into a strong—if ambiguous—statement about Mao past and present.