Too Many Times: On Klee’s Angelus Novus
Annie Bourneuf, School of the Art Institute of Chicago
April 25, 2017 · 5:00 pm—6:30 pm EDT · Room N107, School of Architecture
Program in European Cultural Studies and Media and Modernity
The artist R. H. Quaytman recently discovered that Paul Klee mounted his watercolored oil-transfer drawing Angelus Novus (1920)—famous for its prominent place in the writings of its first owner, Walter Benjamin—on top of an engraved portrait of Martin Luther from 1838. In this lecture, Bourneuf ventures a new interpretation of the work in light of Quaytman’s discovery, considering issues of portraiture and defacement, disenchantment and reenchantment, and chronologies of modernity in relation to the object’s material complexity and the relations it proposes among painting, engraving, oil-transfer drawing, and printed book.
Annie Bourneuf is Assistant Professor in the Department of Art History, Theory, and Criticism at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She is the author of Paul Klee: The Visible and the Legible (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2015), winner of the 2016 Robert Motherwell Book Award.