Hans-Jürgen Kleinhammes 

Neue Landschaft

Germany, 1968 

Silkscreen in 6 colors on lightly brownish paper

Image Size: H: 60.5cm x W: 64.5cm

Paper Size: H: 68.5cm x W: 88.5cm
Reference number: UJK001

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Hans-Jürgen Kleinhammes (1937-2008) was a German painter and visual artist who studied in Dresden, Hamburg, and then Paris in 1966 on the Cité Internationale des Artes scholarship. Kleinhammes’ style is characterised by a signature abstraction of minimalistic fragmented landscapes, playing an essential part in making the discredited topic of "landscape" completely new. He rose to prominence as the post-war wave of pop art from the U.S. and England reached Germany in the 60s.

 

In 1982, Kleinhammes received the Water Lilies Prize for Fine Arts from the city of Munich, where he spent many of his later years before passing in 2008.

ABOUT THE PAINTING

From 1964, Kleinhammes began developing the abstract style that would define his career. He focused around a peculiar theme, titling his pieces either Neue Landschaft (“New Landscape”) or Metaphysische Landschaft (“Metaphysical Landscape”), depicting similar minimal scenes in new thought-provoking ways.

 

These landscape paintings consisted of a recurring assortment of clouds, objects, and patterns that conformed with the pop art tendencies of the time. The lighting within the scenes were eerily flat, with no shadowing, almost collage-like. Features that appear in the images would sometimes be labeled with a number, either serving to order them or seemingly at random.


This Neue Landschaft from 1968 shows three opened “umbrellas” facing the viewer, numbered 1 to 3, left to right. Sense of depth is achieved through clouds… and shading applied to the umbrellas.