Helm I


Distemper on canvas

235 x 189.5 cm (92 1/2 x 74 5/8 in.) (framed)

A figure in green camouflage stands out against an ochre background. A Nazi army helmet is on top. Here, the deeply connoted object becomes a harmless shape in search of a new meaning.

In the early 1970s, Markus Lüpertz made a series of paintings featuring motifs from German history. He depicted uniforms and Nazi military insignia and army helmets, such as in this tempera on canvas called Helm I. The form's centrality, making the motif absurd, fuels the tension between content and container and prompts the viewer to take a fresh look at history.

Lüpertz's painting Helm I is being presented for the first time by the Pinault Collection during the “Untitled, 2020” exhibition at the Punta della Dogana in Venice (2020).