Sigmar Polke (February 13th 1941 Oels, Poland – June 10, 2010 Cologne, Germany) was a photographer and painter and co-founder of the capitalist realism.
From 1959 to 1960, Polke completed a glass painting apprenticeship in Düsseldorf.
In 1961 he studied under Gerhard Hoehme and Karl Otto Götz at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf, which he finished in 1967.
In 1963, together with Gerhard Richter and Konrad Lueg, he founded Capitalist Realism.
From 1970 to 1971 he was a guest professor at the College of Fine Arts in Hamburg and a professor at the same university between 1977 and 1991.
Polke lived and worked from 1972 on for six years at the Willicher Gaspelshof, where, together with changing friends and guests, a kind of “artist’s commune” emerged.
In 1978, he moved to Cologne, where he lived until his death on cancer.