Who’s Afraid of Blue, Red and Green?

Günther Selichar

Günther Selichar, Who’s Afraid of Blue, Red and Green? – Zip/Zap

Twin-wall plastic panel filled with pigment, wooden plate, iron frame, 230 x 90 cm

Austria 1996–1997


Collection: Courtesy Tiroler Landesmuseum Ferdinandeum Collection, Innsbruck, Copyright: Günther Selichar, Bildrecht, Vienna.


Who’s Afraid of Blue, Red and Green? is an incomplete work series that Selichar started in 1990. It explores the most elementary conditions of images – both mediatized and painted images alike. In this context, the artist operates with the interplay of analogy and deviation. (Bohnen: 1993/1994)


Who’s Afraid of Blue, Red and Green? refers to a work by the color field painter Barnett Newman. […] The form of deviation practiced by Selichar derives from the frame conditions of the television picture or the primary colors of other mass media, such as color photography, video, and film. Whereas the painted picture, as in the case of Newman, is composed of “pure” colors, the television picture is constituted with the help of the combined green. [...] The image and color field proportions serve as secondary analogue functions: [...]  from the first standardized television frame format to a virtual panorama television format to the cinemascope format; all frame sizes that are available to the present-day eye as standardized frame conditions. With the visualization of the workaday perspective, the artist not only infiltrates the aesthetic paradigm of the golden section, [...] he also determines to what extent new media have departed from the roots of the picture. [...]  By filling the pigment into twin-wall plastic panels, the artist not only invents a new bonding agent but also suggests the net structure of the television monitor through the striped layering. (Doswald: 2004)


Günther Selichar, born 1960 in Linz, Austria, lives and works in Vienna, Austria.


Uli Bohnen, “Between and Across the Media, Naturally!,” in Who’s Afraid of Blue, Red and Green? (Salzburg: Günther Selichar, 1993/94).

Christoph Doswald, “Who's Afraid of Blue, Red and Green?,” in Abstraction Now, eds. Künstlerhaus Wien, Sandro Droschl and Norbert Pfaffenbichler (Graz: Edition Camera Austria, 2004).

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