Ellsworth Kelly. Retrospective

EXHIBITION 17.10.97 – 20.01.98

Ellsworth Kelly (born in 1923) is among the most important postwar artists in the United States. He is a part of the generation that went beyond Abstract Expressionism in the 1950s and developed a new pictorial language. In contrast to some of his American contemporaries, Kelly sought an intense discourse with classical European modern art. After the war, he moved to Paris, where he lived from 1948 to 1954 and became acquainted with Arp, Brancusi, Matisse, Mondrian, and Vantongerloo. In addition, he was interested in Romanesque and Byzantine art and architecture.

The exhibition opens with "Window" (1949), a work that reproduces the window of the Museum of Modern Art in Paris and whose association of painting and relief already anticipates Kelly's later oeuvre. It appears as a representation of visible reality and yet holds its own as an independent work. In other, early works, like "Spectrum Colors Arranged by Chance" (1951–1953), Kelly showed his opposition to classical image composition by including aleatory elements. After his return to New York, Kelly grappled with current art movements like Pop Art and Minimal Art, which he imbued with individual identity by combining bold colors and geometric surfaces, painting, and sculpture, as in wall/floor pieces like "Blue Red" (1966). The expansion of the picture into the room itself allowed Kelly to create his first standalone aluminum sculpture, "Pony" (1959). He succeeded in making the picture a part of the wall and the architecture the backdrop of the painting with "Color Panels for a Large Wall" (1978), an 18-part series of rectangular, monochrome canvases, shown here for the first time in an exhibition. Since the 1970s, Kelly has had curved forms in his repertoire of shapes. Despite their strictly reduced pictorial language and monochrome coloring, his "Curves" underscore his works' organic character and open new spatial dimensions. With playful lightness, the freer, curved forms of the work "Three Panels: Orange, Dark Gray, Green"(1986) let the wall fade into the background. The space is now dominated by dancing, moving relationships among the surfaces.

Ellsworth Kelly, Spectrum Colors, arranged by chance, 1952-53, private collection
Ellsworth Kelly, Spectrum Colors, arranged by chance, 1952-53, private collection
Ellsworth Kelly, Yellow Black, 1988, The Douglas S. Cramer Collection
Ellsworth Kelly, Yellow Black, 1988, The Douglas S. Cramer Collection
Ellsworth Kelly, Red Curve, 1986, The Meyerhoff Collection, Phoenix, MD
Ellsworth Kelly, Red Curve, 1986, The Meyerhoff Collection, Phoenix, MD
Ellsworth Kelly, Orange Relief with Green, 1991, Tate Gallery, London
Ellsworth Kelly, Orange Relief with Green, 1991, Tate Gallery, London
Ellsworth Kelly. Retrospective, installation view, Haus der Kunst, 1997, photo Wilfried Petzi
Ellsworth Kelly. Retrospective, installation view, Haus der Kunst, 1997, photo Wilfried Petzi
Ellsworth Kelly. Retrospective, installation view, Haus der Kunst, 1997, photo Wilfried Petzi
Ellsworth Kelly. Retrospective, installation view, Haus der Kunst, 1997, photo Wilfried Petzi
Ellsworth Kelly. Retrospective, installation view, Haus der Kunst, 1997, photo Wilfried Petzi
Ellsworth Kelly. Retrospective, installation view, Haus der Kunst, 1997, photo Wilfried Petzi
Ellsworth Kelly. Retrospective, installation view, Haus der Kunst, 1997, photo Wilfried Petzi
Ellsworth Kelly. Retrospective, installation view, Haus der Kunst, 1997, photo Wilfried Petzi

Stretch your view


Stretch your view

Picture Gallery


Exhibition catalogue

Ellsworth Kelly. Black & White

The catalogue includes texts by Jörg Daur, Carter Foster, Alexander Klar, and Ulrich Wilmes MORE


EXHIBITION

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EXHIBITION, App

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Richard Lindner

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EXHIBITION

Michail Wrubel

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EXHIBITION

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EXHIBITION

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EXHIBITION

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EXHIBITION

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App

App "Kelly in Munich"

An app for iPhone and iPad was released to accompany the Ellsworth Kelly exhibitions at Haus der Kunst and the Staatliche Graphische Sammlung in 2011. MORE


Audioguide

Black Paintings — Audioguide, 2006

The exhibition presented for the first time an overview of the famous black paintings by artists of the New York School, including works by Barnett Newman, Robert Rauschenberg, Mark Rothko, Frank Stella, and others. MORE


Edition

Ellsworth Kelly: "Black Curves", 2011

MORE


EXHIBITION

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EXHIBITION

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Goethe-Institut Postdoctoral Fellowship at Haus der Kunst

The program was inaugurated in August 2013 and awards each fellowship for one academic year. The fifth fellowship is to start in August 2017. MORE