Axel Ciesielski is an avid collector of Sigmar Polke’s works and probably the only person in the world who can say that he owns each one of the artist’s editions. These editions are currently being shown in Siegen at the Museum of Contemporary Art, travelling to les Abattoirs in Toulouse spring 2014. Of course, Axel Ciesielski’s intense collecting activity is based on a well-established collection of numerous earlier drawings and works on canvas, but it always ever included the posters to the exhibitions.
Accordingly, this book presents all the posters for exhibitions containing works by Sigmar Polke – posters that are almost exclusively determined by an ironic eye that points up the anarchic wit and innovative formal world of this extraordinary artist. But according to the introductory remarks by Claus von der Osten who was responsible for the catalogue raisonné of Polke’s editions, the special aspect about this poster collection is the fact that the collector has obtained perfect copies of all the posters, which the artist himself included as artist posters in the catalogue raisonné of the editions. At the same time, the book is also a journey through the art world of the 1960s.
Leafing through these gems, it quickly becomes clear who Polke’s early benefactors were and where presentations were later held, but also which large institutional retrospectives subsequently promoted and reflected his worldwide fame. As a result, the book is a veritable who’s who of contemporary art, whether presented by galleries, art associations and museums of world renown. Thus, a selection has been made not only from the well-known examples, but also from the puzzling motifs in the artist’s work, making this book something of a crosssection of Polke’s richly-facetted oeuvre.