- Art, Birthday, Quotes

“To be alive is to engage in a daily struggle for form and for survival.”

Happy birthday, Gerhard Richter! 87, today! Here are some paintings by and quotes from the artist.

“Art serves to establish community. It links us with others and with the things around us, in a shared vision and effort.”

richter 1
Betty (1988)

“To talk about paintings is not only difficult but perhaps pointless, too. You can only express in words what words are capable of expressing, what language can communicate. Painting has nothing to do with that. Painting is another form of thinking.”

richter 2
September (2005)

“The first impulse towards painting, or toward art in general, stems from the need to communicate, the effort to fix one’s own vision, to deal with appearances (which are alien and must be given names and meanings.) Without this, all work would be pointless and unjustified, like Art for Art’s Sake.”

richter 3
Man Shot Down I (1988)

“Every word, every line, every thought is prompted by the age we live in, with all its circumstances, its ties, its efforts, its past and present. It is impossible to act or think independently and arbitrarily. This is comforting in a way. To the individual, the collective experience of the age represents a bond—and also, in a sense, security; there will always be possibilities even in disaster.”

richter 4.jpg
Abstract Painting (726) (1990)


  • John Madera is the author of Nervosities (Anti-Oedipus Press, 2024). His other fiction is published in Conjunctions, Salt Hill, The &Now Awards 2: The Best Innovative Writing, and many other journals. His nonfiction is published in American Book Review, Bookforum, The Review of Contemporary Fiction, Rain Taxi: Review of Books, The Believer, The Brooklyn Rail, and many other venues. Recipient of an M.F.A. in Literary Arts from Brown University, New York State Council on the Arts awardee John Madera lives in New York City, Rhizomatic and manages and edits Big Other.

Leave a Reply