Anselm Kiefer

Das moralische Gesetz in uns, der gestirnte Himmel über uns [The moral law within us, the starry heavens above us]

About this artwork

In 1969 Anselm Kiefer produced a series of photographs that show him giving the Hitler salute in various historically and culturally charged locations in a variety of costumes. He later published these photographs under the title 'Besatzungen (Occupations)', evoking the Nazis’ military occupation of central Europe. In this photograph Kiefer’s figure posing in military uniform may be faintly discerned under layers of black and white paint. The transparency of the watercolour and the gestural style that Kiefer has used to apply it produce the effect of a light touch that contrasts with his heavily-loaded subject matter. The parodic effect of this is typical of Kiefer’s early works on paper which demonstrate the influence of 1960s conceptual art and his interest in mockery and humour as forms of artistic expression. His later paintings from the 1970s and 1980s also deal with Germany’s Nazi past, but take a more monumental approach.

see media
  • title:
    Das moralische Gesetz in uns, der gestirnte Himmel über uns [The moral law within us, the starry heavens above us]
  • accession number:
    AR01165
  • artist:
  • gallery:
  • object type:
  • subject:
  • materials:
    Photograph, black and white, on paper with paint
  • date created:
    1969 - 2010
  • measurements:
    76.50 x 58.50 cm
  • credit line:
    ARTIST ROOMS National Galleries of Scotland and Tate. Acquired jointly through The d’Offay Donation with assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Art Fund 2011.
  • copyright:
    © ANSELM KIEFER
This artwork is part of Artist Rooms

Anselm Kiefer

Anselm Kiefer