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Georg Baselitz is one of the most prominent European artists of the post–World War II era, whose work continues to serve as a significant reference point for recent generations. His suite of sixteen large-format paintings Mrs. Lenin and the Nightingale (2008) is based on the repetition of the same compositional structure: two upside-down male figures sitting next to each other, their penises exposed and their hands resting solemnly on their thighs. The compositional motif originates from Otto Dix’s renowned portrait The Artist’s Parents II (Die Eltern des Künstlers II, 1924) but here Baselitz replaced the figures in the original composition with two dictators, Vladimir Lenin and Joseph Stalin. The former is portrayed as “Mrs. Lenin,” wearing a skirt and high-heeled shoes (a reference to his love of disguise), while the latter, known for his singing voice and interest in poetry, is "the nightingale." Each of the sixteen paintings bears an individual title comprising a pun or an enigmatic phrase inspired for the most part by reflections upon, or encounters with, the work of modern and contemporary artists.

During the Veteran Summer two creepy uncles are scaring Mike (Im Veteranensommer machen zwei böse Onkel Mike Angst)

Details

  • Title: Mrs Lenin and the Nightingale
  • Creator: Georg Baselitz
  • Location: Bilbao, Spain
  • Physical Dimensions: 300 x 250 cm each
  • Type: Painting
  • Medium: Oil on canvas, 16 paintings
  • Artwork's location in the Museum: Room 207, Sala 208

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