Neo Rauch (born 18 April 1960)
LEIPZIG, Germany—Over the last quarter century Neo Rauch has emerged as one of the key figures in the resurgence of German figurative painting. The principal artist of the so-called New Leipzig School, he takes his lead from painters such as Georg Baselitz and Gerhard Richter—who, like him, are natives of the former East Germany—as well as influences ranging from state-sponsored Socialist Realism to Surrealism to the art of comic books and commercial graphics.
Rauch's large-scale, often stridently colored paintings have the character of feverishly worked notations from a particularly unsettling dream life. Soldiers, animals, and people conducting business, carousing, and enacting strange rituals slip between historical periods and pictorial styles in a seeming parody of narrative painting.