회고전 - Los Angeles County Museum of Art, BCAM, 3층
2016년 4월 24일 부터 9월 11일 까지
아그네스 마틴(Agnes Martin’s, 1912–2004)의 첫번째 회고전은 1992년부터 미국에서의 작업들이다. 이 대규모 전시회는 초기의 다른매체를 쓴 잘 알려지지 않았던 실험작을 드러내며 바이오모픽 추상에서 부터 그녀의 특징이 된 넋을 놓고 보게 만드는 격자무늬들과 줄그어진 캔버스들 까지 그녀의 발전을 추적해가는 광범위한 그녀의 실행을 펼친다.
20세기의 중요한 작가이며 추상의 선구자인 아그네스 마틴의 날카로운 견식을 가진 심미적인 미학과 은둔 생활 방식은 모든 창의적인 분야에 걸쳐 예술가들과 실무자들에게 영감을 주고 있다. 그녀의 방식은, 차분하면서도 정서적인 깊은 신념과 미술의 표현능력을 강조한다. 마틴은 완벽함을 추구하는 그녀의 작업에서 아름다움, 무결함, 그리고 행복함을 추구하는 하는것에 매진하는 것을 보였다.
마틴의 그리드 발전상은 추상회화 역사의 교차로를 형성했다. 닦아내고 색을 매긴 예민한 표면에 부드럽게 연필 라인들을 새김으로써 마틴은 기하학적이고 공간적인 언어로 확실히 만들어 냈는데 그것은 그녀가 수십년간 계속해서 정제하는 것과 재해석 하는 것을 고집한 것 일테다. 순수 추상의 옹호자로서 마틴은 1950년대와 1960년대 후반의 지배적인 남성중심 예술계에서 몇 안되는 저명한 여성작가들 중 한 명이었다.
1967년에 그녀의 작업이 칭송 받을 때, 마틴은 뉴욕을 떠났고 그녀의 작업은 침묵과 고요속에 진행했다 미국과 캐나다를 가로지르며 말이다. 쿠바, 뉴멕시코(미국 남서부) 외곽의 외딴 곳에 정착하며 마틴은 1973년에 작품 활동에 들어갔다. 엄격히 규정되고 스스로 규제한 작업을 하며 마틴은 비범하고 통찰력있는 작품들을 그녀가 사망한 2004년도 까지 30년넘게 계속하였다.
BCAM, Level 3
April 24, 2016–September 11, 2016
The first retrospective of Agnes Martin’s (1912–2004) work in the United States since 1992, this extensive exhibition covers the full breadth of her practice, revealing her early and little-known experiments with different media and tracing her development from biomorphic abstraction to the mesmerizing grids and striped canvases that became her hallmark.
A seminal artist of the twentieth century and a pioneer of abstraction, Agnes Martin’s visionary aesthetic and reclusive lifestyle have inspired artists and practitioners across all creative disciplines. Her style, though restrained, underscored her deep conviction in the emotive and expressive power of art. Martin viewed her work as a pursuit of perfection, striving to instill every painting with “beauty, innocence, and happiness.”
Martin’s development of the grid marked a crossroads in the history of abstract painting. By gently inscribing penciled lines over subtle fields of wash and color, Martin established a geometric and spatial language that she would persist in refining and reinterpreting over ensuing decades. An advocate of pure abstraction, Martin was one of the few prominent female artists in the prevailingly masculine art world of the late 1950s and 1960s.
In 1967, just as her art was gaining acclaim, Martin abandoned New York City and her practice in pursuit of silence and solitude, traversing the United States and Canada. Settling on a remote mesa outside of Cuba, New Mexico, Martin returned to art-making in 1973. Working within tightly prescribed and self-imposed limits, Martin continued to make extraordinary, visionary works for over three decades until her death in 2004.
(Los Angeles—March 8, 2016) The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) presents Agnes Martin, the first and most comprehensive retrospective of the artist’s work since 1992. This extensive exhibition covers the full breadth of Martin’s practice, revealing her early and little-known experiments with different media, and tracing the development of her work from biomorphic abstraction to the mesmerizing grids and striped canvases that became her hallmark.
A seminal artist of the 20th century and a pioneer of abstraction, Martin viewed her work as a pursuit of perfection, striving to instill every painting with “beauty, innocence, and happiness.” Her style, though restrained, underscored her deep conviction in the emotive and expressive power of art. Martin’s development of the grid marked a crossroads in the history of abstract painting. The artist established a geometric and spatial language often by gently inscribing penciled lines over subtle fields of wash and color—a practice that she would persist in refining and reinterpreting over ensuing decades. A contemporary of the abstract expressionists, Martin was one of the few prominent female artists in the prevailingly masculine art world of the late 1950s and 1960s.
LACMA’s presentation of Agnes Martin is curated by Michael Govan, CEO and Wallis Annenberg Director of LACMA, with Jennifer King, associate curator, director’s office, and features nearly 100 objects including oil and acrylic paintings, multimedia pieces, watercolors and drawings, a print portfolio, and two sculptural works. The retrospective originated at Tate Modern, London (June 3–October 11, 2015), where it was cocurated by Frances Morris, Director of Collection, International Art, and Tiffany Bell, Artifex Press Editor, Agnes Martin Catalogue Raisonné, before traveling to Kunstsammlung Nordrhein-Westfalen, Düsseldorf (November 7, 2015–March 6, Image captions on page 5 Page 2 2016). Following LACMA’s presentation (April 24–September 11, 2016), Agnes Martin concludes at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York (October 7, 2016–January 11, 2017).
“As the only West Coast venue in the United States, LACMA is pleased to present the work of an artist who was so fundamentally inspired and influenced by the landscape of the American Southwest,” said Michael Govan, LACMA CEO and Wallis Annenberg Director.
Jennifer King, associate curator, adds, “To appreciate Agnes Martin’s subtle aesthetic, one has to view her artwork in person. This exhibition offers an unparalleled opportunity to see so many works from throughout her career in dialogue with one another.”
About the Exhibition
Agnes Martin is organized chronologically and presents the artist’s work in two sections, which span her artistic career.
Up to 1967
The first section of the exhibition follows Martin as she moves from the biomorphic forms of the late 1950s to the groundbreaking grid paintings of the 1960s.
Born in the Canadian prairies, Martin moved to the United States in 1931. She trained as a teacher and later studied art in Albuquerque and New York, painting naturalistic landscapes, still lifes, and portraits. In the 1950s she moved to the remote town of Taos, New Mexico, where she began exploring abstraction. The pale compositions of organic shapes she made during this period show the influence of Cubism and Abstract Expressionism, while also reflecting her encounters with the expansive desert landscape and Native American textiles.
In 1957, Martin was offered representation by vanguard art dealer Betty Parsons, whose list of artists included Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, Barnett Newman, and Ad Reinhardt. At Parsons’s insistence, Martin relocated to New York, where she joined the artistic community living in the Coenties Slip area of Lower Manhattan. Then age 45, she worked alongside emerging artists such as Ellsworth Kelly, Jasper Johns, Lenore Tawney, and Robert Rauschenberg, gradually developing a vocabulary of simple geometric shapes— squares, rectangles, circles, dots—that she often repeated across delicate earth-colored backgrounds. In New York, Martin increasingly worked in formats of two sizes: intimate canvases of roughly a square foot, and larger ones of six square feet. During the early 1960s her geometric compositions evolved into allover grids penciled onto monochromatic Page 3 surfaces. From a farther distance, the grids seem to blend into single tones. This is regarded as Martin’s signature style: a faint hand-drawn line forever in dialogue with a square canvas.
In 1967, Martin abruptly left the New York art scene just as her work was gaining considerable acclaim. In search of solitude and silence, she travelled across the US and Canada for almost two years before finally settling on a remote mesa in New Mexico. During this period, she began to write about beauty and the creative process, drawing on her familiarity with Taoist, Buddhist, and Zen thought.
Martin emerged from her artistic hiatus in 1973 with the publication of the portfolio On a Clear Day, featuring 30 screenprints of permutations on the grid from. These works demonstrate the great range of her imagination: while each print can be seen as a distinct image, Martin builds layers of meaning across the complete body of work.
The second section of the exhibition encompasses the latter period of Martin’s career. In 1974, at age 62, Martin returned to painting. The vast desert landscape shaped Martin’s art, as did her solitude and simple lifestyle. She established an aesthetic that she would continue to refine over the next three decades: six-foot-square canvases marked with faint bands or stripes of acrylic wash finely outlined in graphite. Through the 1970s Martin used these self-imposed constraints to make radiant compositions in shades of pale blue and pink. Her works from 1977 to 1992 are mostly rendered in tones of gray, conveying a space she saw as “infinite, dimensionless, without form and void.” Slight irregularities reveal the handmade nature of these paintings and accentuate their textured surfaces.
Over time, Martin began to draw connections between her works by introducing recurring compositional principles. While she saw each painting as a discrete object, she used subtle repetition to link it with other works. Her interest in seriality culminated in the production of With My Back to the World (1997) and several other multipart series each conceived as single works of art.
As Martin aged and found it more difficult to handle large canvases, she reduced the size of her works to five square feet. Her paintings of the 1990s evoke universal sentiments such as love, innocence, and happiness through luminous, colorful palettes and descriptive titles. The paintings she produced near the end of her life have a more foreboding presence: returning to geometric forms and palettes of gray and black in her late works, Martin seemed to acknowledge the impending end of her singular career.
About Agnes Martin
Born in the Canadian prairies, Agnes Martin (1912–2004) moved to the United States in 1931 and lived in Washington and Oregon until 1940. Martin studied at Western Washington State College, Bellingham, and the University of New Mexico, Albuquerque. She received her BS and MA from Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, and taught at public schools in Washington, Delaware, and New Mexico during the late 1930s and the 1940s, at the University of New Mexico in the late 1940s, and at Eastern Oregon College, La Grande, in 1952–53.
Martin lived and taught periodically in New York in the 1940s and early 1950s. In 1957 she settled in Coenties Slip in Lower Manhattan, where her friends and neighbors included Robert Indiana, Ellsworth Kelly, and Jack Youngerman. In 1958, her first solo show took place at Section Eleven of the Betty Parsons Gallery, New York, and her work was included in the 1966 exhibition Systemic Painting at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.
Major traveling exhibitions of Martin‘s work have been organized by the Institute of Contemporary Art at the University of Philadelphia (1973), Hayward Gallery in London (1977), Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam (1991), Whitney Museum of American Art in New York (1993), and Dia:Beacon in New York (2004). Her writings were published in 1992 in conjunction with her exhibition at Kunstmuseum Winterthur in Switzerland and again in 2005 by Hatje Cantz Publishers. Martin has been honored with, among other awards, the Skowhegan Medal of Painting and Sculpture (1987), Oskar Kokoschka Prize (1992), Golden Lion at the Venice Biennale (1997), National Medal of Arts from the Office of the President, and Lifetime Acheivement Award from the Women’s Caucus for Art (2005). Martin died in Taos, New Mexico, in 2004. Her visionary aesthetic continues to influence artists across many disciplines today.