The space at White Cube Bermondsey feels larger every time I visit. The occasion this time was for the Anslem Kiefer show, Walhalla. It was a cold damp day, perfectly suited to the dystopian world inside. Seeing healthy children in buggies or running about felt distinctly odd in this environment.Some work can, I think, come across as the desiccated, crusted and polluted remains of an apocalyptic event but that is too easy; the layers and rich materiality tell more of a story. Look at the layering and peeling of his canvases.
A track obscured by almost impenetrable metallic surface. Is it where we have come from or where we are going? Forward or back?
Teetering structures labeled with the names of eminent people from the past.
Hope, for me at least, came through in the intense icon blue, such a contrast to the colours seen elsewhere.
As with all Anselm Kiefer’s work, the readings and emotions evoked are dense and complicated. Not for nothing is he one of the most respected artists working today.