Below is our preview, which explains the background of the show. Click here to read our Adventures of the Black Square Whitechapel Gallery review.
20th century abstraction has certainly been making a comeback this year with blockbuster exhibitions of Piet Mondrian, Tate Liverpool and Kazimir Malevich, Tate Modern. Now the Whitechapel Gallery, London is jumping on the bandwagon with an exhibition focusing on 100 years of Abstract art through 100 works.
Curated by Iwona Blazwick, the show takes a chronological journey through the development of abstraction, offering a fresh look at paintings, sculptures, films and photographs by 80 modern & contemporary artists including Carl Andre, Dan Flavin, Andrea Fraser, Piet Mondrian, Gabriel Orozco, Hélio Oiticica, Rosemarie Trockel, and of course Kazimir Malevich. The Whitechapel’s aim is to follow the emergence of Abstract art at the beginning of the 20th century through to the rise of Constructivism in revolutionary Russia, the avant-garde in Europe and finally the geometric abstraction of Latin American artists such as Lygia Clark and Oiticica where a new social and participatory way of working was forming.
Fittingly, the exhibition begins with the iconic beginnings of geometrical abstraction by Malevich's, Black and White, Suprematist Composition (1915). It is then divided into four themes: Communication (how abstract art can encourage radical change), Architectonics (how abstraction can underpin socially transformative spaces), Utopia (imagining a new, ideal society), and Everyday (following how abstract act has filtered into all aspects of visual culture from logos to textile design).
One highlight not to be missed is an entire wall filled with photographs of radio towers in Moscow and Berlin, an example of Aleksandr Rodchenko’s photomontage. The exhibition appears keen to represent abstract art as being inherently political, fundamentally influenced by social movements and technological change. Look out for the featured magazines which expressed revolutionary ideas in art and society through typography and graphic design.
One for the rebels, this exhibition makes no excuses in its narrative of the development of abstraction in Modern Art.
|What||Adventures of the Black Square: Abstract Art and Society 1915-2015, Whitechapel Gallery|
|Where||Whitechapel Gallery, 72-78 Whitechapel High Street, London, E1 7QX | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Aldgate East (underground)|
15 Jan 15 – 06 Apr 15, 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM
|Price||£Prices not yet released|
|Website||Click here for more information|