"Gesammelte Werke”, Dieter Roth 

"Leave a blank page ... it receives sufficient meaning from the other pages where something has been written”, Dieter Roth.

Karl-Dietrich Roth was born in Hanover in 1930, the son of a German mother and a Swiss father. After finishing high school in Germany, and at the end of World War II, he lived for three years without his parents in the house of a relative in Zurich. In this house, frequented by artists and actors, he was encouraged to paint and write poems. He became well known due to the material that he used in his artists’ books, paintings and sculptures: food products in a state of decomposition.
Despite the apparent state of seclusion in which he lived, as if in exile, his circle of friends and admirers confirmed that he was a member of the group. Starting as a poet, he was recognized as a master of graphic technologies, capable of elevating the book to a contemporary support for art.

His artists’ books combined poetic, conceptual and visual features.
Some of them are masterpieces, published or reprinted in the Gesammelte Werke collection, developed between 1969/1986, and published by Hansjorg Mayer.

The Gesammelte Werke collection is a remarkable editorial and graphic set of books, filled with exuberance and coherence, irradiating involvement, emotion and affective surrender, that he himself assumed when he said: "a book is a hub".

Silveira, Paulo (2008). As existências da narrativa no livro de artista. (copyright) Porto Alegre: Institute of Arts of the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul. Retrieved on 29 May, 2012 from: http://www.lume.ufrgs.br/bitstream/handle/10183/12111/000623021.pdf?sequence=1

Image: Dieter Roth, Gesammelte Werke, 1969-1986. Artists’ Books and Editions. Coll. Fundação de Serralves – Museu de Arte Contemporânea, Porto. Photo Filipe Braga, © Fundação de Serralves, Porto

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