T 1988-E 28
acrylic on canvas
46 x 65 cm / 18 1/8 x 25 1/2 in.
verso on the canvas overlap dated and titled, stamped 'Inventaire H.H.' on the stretcher
The present work was painted in August 1988, almost two years after the artist had suffered a stroke in December 1986. Hartung was confined to a wheelchair, but the creativity of the artist overcame the physical limitations. Hartung had already used airbrush and compressors in the early 1960s to apply paint. But even before his stroke, he had less strength in his hands and arms and was not able to hold the heavy canisters. One of his assistants had the idea to fill plunger sprayers (French „sulfateuse“), which are used in vineyards to spray copper sulfate, with paint. The canisters were standing on the floor around the wheelchair, with a long thin rubber hose leading from each canister to a long spraying nozzle, which the artist was easily able to handle. With exchangeable nozzles and different paint texture, the artist was able to achievevarying effects. During the painting process, an assistant was standing next to the artist, using the plunger to build pressure and handing the artist nozzles with different colour paints. Hartung was enthusiastic about the new technology, which enabled him a great range with very little movement. With the help of the „sulfateuse“ Hartung created works which are painterly and gestural. Provenance available
Price on request