After Museum of Modern Art, Department of Eagles came to an end in 1972, Broodthaers announced that he was no longer interested in being a museum director and returned to artistic practice proper. Of all arts, he chose the most traditional one—painting—but promised to invent for it a new form and push the borders of the medium. From 1972 to 1975 he produced a number of polyptychs under the common name of Literary Paintings. Each of those polyptychs consisted of nine unmounted primed canvases pinned to the wall in a square, three in a row. And even if they seemed to be paintings, they were not: Broodthaers had the text printed onto the canvases at the Imprimerie Laconti in Brussels. What you see is the German version of Literary Paintings produced for a group show at Lenbachhaus in Munich. (Chronologically, it followed French and English versions). On these canvases Broodthaers printed a list of famous German writers, poets, philosophers, and one composer—Beethoven—each name preceded by the phrase "the world of" (Die Welt von): "the world of Hölderlin", "the world of Marx", and so on. Typically, Broodthaers, who has always been a great defender of painting, turned openly to painting at time of general disappointment in the medium, when it was increasingly rejected by European and American artists in the minimalist and conceptualist circles. At the same time, he continued to explore the relationship between literature and painting, which had concerned him from the start of his career. "What is painting?" he had asked himself about a decade earlier, and answered, "Well, it is literature." "What is literature then? Well, it is painting." Broodthaers might have been the only artist to whom this was true and in whose practice this idea was reflected.