Zirkusfiguren (Circus Figures)


Acrylic, artificial resin and clay on fabric

300 x 500 cm (118 1/8 x 196 7/8 in.) (framed)

Animals, clowns and acrobats are in full action. Coming to life against a two-tone background, these circus performers look as though they have come straight out of a child's imagination or memory. The joyful din of fairground music can almost be heard.

Made on printed fabric, Zirkusfiguren (Circus Figures) condenses several aspects of Polke's work. An old street photograph painted in a "cloud of dots" forms the grid. Cut out from circus posters, the figures are juxtaposed against this background. The artist's fondness for original textures and bright colours can also be seen.

Mirroring Die Trennung des Mondes von den Einzelnen Planeten, the reverse side of the same painting, Zirkusfiguren was shown for the first time by the Pinault Collection at the 2009 "Mapping the Studio" exhibition at the Palazzo Grassi.