Gerhard Richter is one of the most important, influential and successful contemporary artists in the world. Even in China's young art scene, the works of Gerhard Richter are discussed more than any others. It is therefore extremely fortunate that the Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden and the Frieder Burda Museum, Baden-Baden, now have the opportunity of presenting the first major retrospective of paintings by this Dresden-born artist at the National Art Museum of China in Beijing. This is being made possible not least through collaboration with the Bayerische Staatsgemaldesammlungen, Munich, and the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin.
From 15th May until 2nd July 2008 no fewer than 56 paintings produced between 1963 and 2007 will be on show in Beijing, providing a representative overview of the comprehensive and multifaceted oeuvre of this great artist. Gerhard Richter himself determined the selection of works and the style of presentation for the exhibition at the National Art Museum of China.
Over the past 45 years, Richter's painting has been a constant dialogue between figurative and abstract pictorial concepts. Despite his stylistic diversity, his paintings always revolve around the central theme of the artistic representation of contradictory reality.
Gerhard Richter was born in Dresden in 1932. He studied at the Hochschule für Bildende Künste there before leaving the GDR in 1961. He then began studying art again in Düsseldorf. Since 1964 his paintings have been shown in numerous exhibitions and are held in all the major modern art museums around the world. Most recently, important retrospectives of his works were shown at the Museum of Modern Art, New York (2002) and at the K 20 Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf (2005). Gerhard Richter has won many awards for his art, including the Praemium Imperiale (1997) in Tokyo and the State Prize of the Federal State of North Rhine-Westphalia (2000). Since 2007 he has been an honorary citizen of Cologne, where his design for the window in the south transept of the city's famous Cathedral was consecrated in the same year.