Anselm Kiefer’s 1973 painting, Resurrexit, is a haunting depiction of an abandoned forest road. The trees are covered in blood and there is a primeval snake slithering throughout the scene. At the fading point of the road is a wooden staircase that leads to an unknown destination. Kiefer often incorporates unusual materials such as straw, ash, clay, lead, and shellac into his works to create texture and depth.
Kiefer’s paintings are influenced by German history and the Holocaust; which he often reflects on through the poetry of Paul Celan. Resurrexit has been exhibited in several prestigious institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art and Centre Pompidou. It is considered part of the neo-expressionist movement where symbolism reigns supreme through minimalism and abstract expressionism.
Resurrexit invokes feelings of unease with its stark imagery and symbolic representation. The painting serves as a reminder of dark times in German history that should never be forgotten or repeated. Through his use of unconventional materials and careful attention to detail, Kiefer creates thought-provoking pieces that leave an indelible mark on anyone who views them.