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Paul Thek

Paul Thek was one of the foremost artists of the postwar era. His unique place in art history may perhaps even be compared to that of Joseph Beuys. Like Beuys, Thek extended the concept of the artwork and broadened perceptions of art and life. A deep sense of religion and the belief that art should serve society were a source of both inspiration and strength.

Thek‘s Wax Meat Pieces, Technological Reliquaries and in particular his environments such as The Tomb attracted considerable attention in the USA, where he exhibited widely, as well as in Europe, where he took part in the 1968 documenta 4, the 1972 documenta 5 and the 1976 Venice Biennale.

Beside paintings, drawings and bronces, Thek also made installations and frequently used unconventional materials such as newspapers, sand and plants, at risk of them being ephemeral, and he also liked to operate as part of a collective. —Axel Jablonski

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  • Paul Thek, The Eye of the Beholder, 1987

    pencil and acrylic on paper
    18.9 x 25.2 in (48 x 64 cm)

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  • Paul Thek, Untitled (cityscape), 1986

    graphite and watercolor on paper
    24.02 x 18.11 in (61 x 46 cm)

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  • Paul Thek, Untitled (beach with figures), 1986

    graphite and watercolor on paper
    20.87 x 26.77 in (53 x 68 cm)

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  • Paul Thek, Untitled (New Roses), 1986

    marker and pastel on paper
    16.93 x 14.17 in (43 x 36 cm)

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  • Paul Thek, Untitled, 1983

    gouache on newsprint
    25.2 x 31.1 in (64 x 79 cm)

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  • Paul Thek, Earth Flint, 1980

    oil on canvas with artist's frame
    18.11 x 18.11 in (46 x 46 cm)

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  • Paul Thek, Untitled (Balloon), 1975

    etching, on handmade Twinrocker paper
    10.24 x 7.87 in (26 x 20 cm)

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  • Paul Thek, Self Portrait as Hot Potato, 1975

    enamel and pencil on newspaper
    22.83 x 33.46 in (58 x 85 cm)

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