Line as object
29 November 2013 – 2 March 2014
Galerie der Gegenwart, 2nd floor
Gego during installation of Reticulárea. Museo de Bellas Artes, Caracas 1969
Photo: Juan Santana, © Fundación Gego
Gertrud Goldschmidt (b. 1912 in Hamburg, d. 1994 in Caracas) was one of the leading artists of her generation in Latin America. Under her adopted name, Gego, she became known above all for her large-scale spatial installations. She regarded her works not as sculptures, but as structures or drawings in space. Among her most striking pieces are large objects made of wire, rope or delicate strands of aluminium, which were often created as 'percent for art' commissions. From November 2013 onward, the Hamburger Kunsthalle is presenting some of Gego's most important works in her native city.
Gego studied architecture under Paul Bonatz at the Technische Hochschule in Stuttgart from 1932 to 1938. In 1939, at the age of 27, she emigrated to Venezuela via England. Having settled in Caracas, she worked as an architect on large public building projects and was also active as a fine artist. In 1958/59 she began teaching – first of all she taught watercolour and gouache in the architecture and urban planning department of the Universidad Central de Venezuela, then sculpture at the Escuela de Artes Plásticas Cristóbal Rojas. Gego's training and practice as an architect had a major influence on her art, in that the forming of space remained a central concern of her artistic practice. She went on to build an international reputation with numerous exhibitions in Latin America, the United States and Europe.
Concurrently with GEGO. Line as object to play with, the exhibition EVA HESSE. One more than one is being shown on the 3rd floor of the Galerie der Gegenwart. For the first time, works by these two internationally renowned artists are being presented in dialogue in Hamburg, the city of their birth. Each in their own way, Gego and Eva Hesse (1936–1970) were pioneers of spatial installation and also in the use of non-traditional materials in the context of art. Including around 100 exhibits in a wide range of media (drawing, collage, painting, installation and sculpture), the two exhibitions present groups of works by Gego and Hesse that have rarely or never been shown in Germany before.
Following its showing at the Hamburger Kunsthalle, the Gego exhibition will travel in a slightly modified version to the Kunstmuseum Stuttgart and subsequently to the Henry Moore Institute in Leeds (UK).
Curators: Dr. Brigitte Kölle and Dr. Petra Roettig