Karel Appel


Dr. Herbert Fritz Lempert’s gallery (‘ab Mai 1980′ – from May 1980 onward) was housed in a beautiful townhouse on the Prinz-Albert Street in Bonn. Once, this venue hosted one of the largest collections of artists’ posters in Europe and all of these were for sale. There were lots of treasures to be found, like historical prints by Picasso, Chagall and Duchamp, but also a large batch of posters signed by Cy Twombly: some of these could be acquired for as little as 50 DM (Deutsche Mark). Also, for sale a poster reproduced as a blueprint by Stanley Brouwn from 1970, costing just a few ten DM banknotes. The famous Warhol paper bag from 1966 with a Campbell soup tin on it was more expensive. The asking price was 480 DM, if signed. And there were a great many objects by Joseph Beuys on offer as well.

In 1986, I stumbled in this ‘Plakatgalerie’ upon a poster titled Dans l’Action (Within the Action), designed by Karel Appel during the student revolt in Paris in 1968. This original colour lithograph was priced at only 50 DM. Mr. Lempert could supply no further information about the edition, so I wrote a letter to the artist in Dutch. I received an answer almost instantly – in English.