50 x 70 cm
Lithography on paper
Collection Museum Haus Konstruktiv
Annual members' gift, Stiftung für konstruktive, konkrete und konzeptuelle Kunst, 2013
Hans Jörg Glattfelder (born 1939 in Zurich, Switzerland) is ranked as one of the most important contemporary representatives of Constructivist and Concrete Art, not least due to his unceasing eagerness to conduct artistic experiments. He became famous for his reliefs of regular, colorful pyramids. Since the beginning of his artistic career in the 1960s in Florence, Italy, Glattfelder has drawn inspiration from many different avant-garde movements, while Op Art and Kinetic Art have also had an influence on his unique formal idiom. This is exemplified by his humorous work “Décéleration (Langsame Eier / Slow Eggs)” from 2012 in which black egg-shaped objects are moving imperceptibly. His works question the relationship between space and plane, while integrating the beholder also plays a central role. The initial products of his exploration of these issues were industrially manufactured reliefs consisting of rows of prismatic modules.
In his investigation into of the phenomenon of space, he broke with the “dogma of the right angle” to develop new concrete structures. At the beginning of the 1970s, the artist became engaged with scientific definitions of space. He studied many theories of non-Euclidean geometry, and in 1977, he invented a new type of picture called the “non-Euclidian metaphor.” These pictures are most often four-sided and are divided into converging color fields and lines. He uses pictorial formats that are tilted on their sides and are based on a distorted perspective, evoking the illusion of warped space. These works are attempts to translate the complex ideas of the space of modern physics into constructivist art. Glattfelder himself once remarked about this: “The forms that I invent have a relation to – they point to – something that I cannot represent in a concrete form.”
This tension between rationality and sensuality is what generates the poetic power of his works – works that are, after all, made for a “sehendes Sehen” [seeing sight], as he often points out.
Dominique von Burg