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Anna Oppermann—Drawings


Edited by Dan Byers

8.5 x 13.5 inches, 112 pages, softcover
ISBN 978-1-941753-32-3

Design by Chad Kloepfer
Co-published by Inventory Press and Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts at Harvard University

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Published on the occasion of her first solo show in the United States in twenty years, Anna Oppermann: Drawings surveys the early drawings of this underrecognized German artist. Co-published with the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, this book is the first on Oppermann produced in the United States and features a number of new texts on her work by Connie Butler, Chief Curator, Hammer Museum, UCLA; Meta Marina Beeck, Assistant Curator, Kunsthalle Bielefeld; and a conversation between Carpenter Center director Dan Byers and Ute Vorkoeper, Curator, Anna Oppermann Estate.

Beginning in the mid-1960s through the early ‘70s, Oppermann (1940–1993), best known for her immersive installations, created an astonishing series of surreal drawings that uniquely explode the private space of the home, a traditionally feminine sphere.

These early drawings contribute to a feminist re-centering of such spaces associated with women, casting everyday objects as symbolic, consequential protagonists: houseplants sprawl to take over the picture plane, windows and mirrors provide views into other worlds, and tables display drawings that open out into new domestic scenes.

By placing her own body—her knees, arms, the back of her head—as reference points in the work, Oppermann coaxes the viewer to take on her subjectivity and perspective, emphasizing the gendered realms of the home and the relationships that we form both within and to our private spaces.