All posts tagged: Paul Rabinow

Unconsolable Contemporary: Observing Gerhard Richter

Reviewed by Stella Gatto, independent researcher Paul Rabinow: Unconsolable Contemporary: Observing Gerhard Richter. Durham: Duke University Press, 2017. 176 pages.  Given the insurmountable number of publications already in circulation, contributing an innovative piece of writing to the existing literature on German artist Gerhard Richter (b. 1931) is no small feat. Richter’s website—which is carefully managed by his personal archivist—provides up-to-date accounts of the over 200 monographs, 186 articles, 178 solo exhibition catalogues and over 1300 group exhibition catalogues published since the beginning of the artist’s career in 1962. Albeit outside art historical, critical, and curatorial disciplines, Paul Rabinow’s Unconsolable Contemporary: Observing Gerhard Richter provides new insight into the work of one of the world’s most extensively exhibited and written-about artists. A Professor in the Department of Anthropology at UC Berkeley, Rabinow is most well-known for developing an “anthropology of the contemporary.” As outlined in the introduction of his seminal book Marking Time: On the Anthropology of the Contemporary (2007), Rabinow defines “the contemporary” as “a moving ratio of modernity, moving through the recent past and …