Review

Visual Agitation

KP Brehmer in the permanent exhibition

KP (= Klaus Peter) Brehmer (1938 – 1997) made his name in the 1960s as a painter and graphic artist who recycled images from adverts and illustrated magazines and produced intricate political charts. Working with Konrad Lueg, Sigmar Polke, Gerhard Richter, K.H. Hödicke and Wolf Vostell, he showed at the René Block Gallery in Berlin in 1964 under the banner “Capitalist Realism”. Brehmer himself called his political art “trivial graphics” or “visual agitation”. With his “photo clichés,” as he called his montage of stereotypes used in the print media, Brehmer created his own version of German Pop Art. After training as a process engraver, he studied in 1959 – 61 at the Industrial Art School in Krefeld and in 1961 – 63 at Düsseldorf Art Academy. For two-and-a-half decades (1971 – 97) KP Brehmer was a professor at the University of Fine Arts in Hamburg. Brehmer’s oeuvre has been honoured in recent years with solo exhibitions in Berlin and London and a travelling retrospective in 2019/20 (Nuremberg, Hamburg, The Hague, and Istanbul), placing him within the debate about political art today.

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