A year into his appointment at the Bauhaus, Paul Klee was teaching pictorial configuration as part of the basic course. Following a brief introduction, he immediately got to the heart of the matter: “I’m starting precisely there, where pictorial form begins, with the point that is set in motion.” In a poetic-metaphorical manner Klee laid out a plausible working method for drawing: the artist/ designer takes the line for a walk. This catalog based on the Klee exhibition at the Zentrum in Bern focuses on the significance of handwriting, writing and scriptive signs in artistic practice. In the modern era, script, characters and calligraphy have been areas in which artists have been able to choose between spontaneity and control, and between intuition and rule in their work, exploring the spaces in between. Klee saw letters as well as drawing as based on the line. From abstract expressionist scratchings to mystical symbology, from ancient hieroglyphics to the Art & Language movement, how has the dichotomy of line as decoration and line as communication influenced modern art? This deeply engaging catalog brings together the script works of Paul Klee; the calligraphic-based works of Henri Michaux, Mark Tobey and Brice Marden; the script-like characters of Cy Twombly; the palindromes of Olav Christopher Jenssen; and the spontaneity of Christopher Wool’s graffiti-like works and Jonathan Lasker’s pastose painting style to create an electric snapshot of one of fine art’s most compelling recurring themes. In addition to biographical essays and reproductions of the artists’ relevant works, this playful volume also includes essays by Fabienne Eggelhofer on the art of merging control and spontaneity, Regine Bonnefoit on the relationship between Klee and the poet and painter Henri Michaux, and Martin Dobbe on the possibility of abstract writing.
Hardcover / 10 x 12 3/4 inches / 192 pp / 130 color
Retail Price: $72.00
ZENTRUM PAUL KLEE, BERN