Born and raised in Deutschbaselitz near Kamenz, Georg Baselitz (* 1938 as Georg Kern) visited the Dresden Art Collections as a teenager in the mid-1950s, which he describes in a 2013 interview (Georg Baselitz. Background Stories, SKD 2013, p. 45ff) as "the foundation" for his own work. Here he continues: "As an artist, you work against the images that already exist, but also with them". These references are also reflected in some of the works shown: "Statement" (1999), for example, refers to Raphael's "Sistine Madonna" (1512/13), "The Bridge Ghost's Supper" (2006) to the artists of the BRÜCKE.
In 1956, Baselitz saw paintings by Ferdinand von Rayski, among others, in Dresden. After his landscape study "Wermsdorfer Wald" (c. 1859), which also hung as a reproduction in Baselitz's school, the artist painted various forest pictures from 1969 onwards. This series of works marks the beginning of a peculiarity of his painting that lasted for decades: from now on Baselitz turns his motifs upside down.