© VBK, Wien 2011
The French sculptress Germaine Richier is one of the most important representatives of Surrealist sculpture in the post-war period. She acquired a sound training in her craft from Emile Bourdelle, a pupil of Rodin, at whose academy she worked until Bourdelles death in 1929. This not only explains why, in contrast to many of her contemporaries, Richier could never completely free herself from figurative art and move forward to abstraction; it also most probably explains her tendency towards fragmentisation. As the small lead sculpture illustrates, the artist liked to break up and tear apart compact forms until she had created the impression of something falling apart or even decomposing. This untitled work recalls a broken human body such as the body of Christ as depicted in late medieval Depositions or Entombments.