When Sigmar Polke’s family crossed over to the freedom of West Berlin from the oppression of East Berlin on the subway in 1953, 12-year-old Sigmar feigned sleep to add to the picture of normalcy for his fugitive family. Polke (pronounced “polka,” like the dance), who passed away last Thursday, feigned many things during his life in his art, but usually to question the idea of normalcy, especially the rushed, forced normalcy of his native Germany after World War II. With a smile on his lips, Polke never slept through an opportunity to poke fun at the establishment—artistic, social, or political—and help people connect the dots, usually closely spaced, between apparent normality and absurd abnormality. Please come over to Picture This at Big Think to read more of "Polke Dots."
[Image: Sigmar Polke's "The Goatwagon" (1992).]