A.R. Penck is celebrated as the pioneer of contemporary art. A.R. Penck, whose real name is Ralf Winkler, was born in Dresden in 1935. When he was a young boy, he started painting in oil. Studying at a fine arts university was not possible for him due to GDR-harassment as the government did not like his unconventional thoughts. This is why he pursued his passion for painting in evening classes for nude painting. He had his international breakthrough at the Documenta in 1972, which he could not attend due to bureaucratic obstacles of the GDR.After his expatriation in 1980, A.R. Penck developed a new form of historical painting in his paintings, artworks and editions that he applied to canvas in large formats in a luscious way. Through his professorship at the Kunstakademie in Dusseldorf he got in touch with Georg Baselitz and Jörg Immendorff.
- Born: 5 October 1935
- Place of birth: Dresden, Saxony
- Died: 2 May 2017
- Nationalität: German
- Occupation: Sculptor, graphic artist, painter
- Similar artists: Jörg Immendorff, Georg Baselitz, Sigmar Polke, Markus Lüpertz
- Era: Contemporary art