This small town symbolized the archetype of pastoral American life. Yet this idyllic place was also held hostage by a dark past, manifesting in the racial tensions that scar much of American history.
Richter practices the dual means of representation and abstraction in painting to explore not only the nature of the medium but also its conceptual and historical implications. While these two modes of working are sometimes characterized in oppositional terms, he has famously embraced both, sometimes simultaneously, finding expressive pictorial possibilities in the tension between them. Throughout, he has tested the ability of art to reckon with personal history, collective memory, and identity, particularly in the context of post–World War II German society.