artists & participants
An examination rather than a survey, this exhibition presents distinct models of alternative geometric abstraction in the works of two sculptors: Ruth Vollmer (Munich, 1903; +New York, 1982) and Gertrud Goldschmidt, alias Gego (Hamburg, 1912; +Caracas, 1994). Thinking the Line represents artistic activity that is both constructive and deconstructive, mathematically-rational and randomly-irrational, encompassing both systems and their dissolution. Eschewing a deductive logic of modernist abstraction, Vollmer and Gego develop an open, potentially-unfinished mode of abstract thinking. For both artists, form is always already abstract. In Vollmer’s case, system is derived from mathematical models of planar geometry. And for Gego, it is a modular poetics of space, motivated by an architectural idea of embodied vision. Having been exiled from Germany in the 1930s, to North and South America respectively, Vollmer and Gego succeeded in grafting European cultural and scientific history onto 1960s art production in the United States. The fact of their transnational identities poses fresh questions for art criticism and cultural theory today.
Ruth Vollmer and Gego : Thinking the Line
Gertrud Goldschmidt, alias Gego