Abstraction: From A to B

January 28, 2012—July 27, 2012

January 28, 2012-July 27, 2012
Location: Nelson-Atkins Building, Gallery P27

Admission is free

Abstraction: From A to B, an exhibition of prints by Josef Albers and Herbert Bayer, engages a lively dialogue between geometric and organic abstraction.

Albers' Homage to the Square series explores the power of geometry, proportion and color to evoke a variety of emotional experiences. Bayer's prints celebrate the organic dynamism of nature revealed in pulsing plays of dark and light, rhythmic fluidity and evocative colors. Both artists taught at the German Bauhaus, the 20th century's most innovative and influential school for art, design and architecture. They later became art world luminaries in the United States.

The art of Albers and Bayer is part of a much larger story of abstraction. Circles, spirals, straight and undulating lines, and radically simplified human and animal forms abound in the art of early peoples. The art of classical Greece and Rome celebrated the real and ideal human form.

After the fall of Rome, medieval European art embraced a more abstract language of flattened shapes, stylized line and inaccurate proportions. Renaissance artists, like Leonardo and Michelangelo, returned to classical ideas. Abstraction re-emerged during the late 1800s and, today, coexists with realist art.

Image: Josef Albers, American, 1888-1976, b. Germany, Variant MM, 1968. Color serigraph, 67/100 Image: 19 x 22 in. (48.26 x 55.88 cm) Sheet: 23 x 26 in. (58.42 x 66.04 cm). Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Thomas K. Baker, 71-21-4.

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