Monday, February 22, 2016

Venice: Peggy Guggenheim Collection - Postwar Era. A Recent History - Homages to Jack Tworkov and Claire Falkenstein

Venice:  Peggy Guggenheim Collection - Postwar Era. A Recent History - Homages to Jack Tworkov and Claire Falkenstein. The exhibition Postwar Era. A Recent History - Homages to Jack Tworkov and Claire Falkenstein at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, until April 4, curated by Massimo Luca Barbero offers a fresh, analytical look at postwar American and European art through 1979, the year of Peggy Guggenheim death. More than ninety paintings and sculptures, works, some rarely exhibited, are assembled in clusters and arranged according to theme, style, affinity, and an unconventional chronology, bringing together threads of sensibility that go beyond avant-garde movements and historical tendencies. This context also offers insight into the work of two artists in the Foundation’s collections: Jack Tworkov (1900–1982) and Claire Falkenstein (1908–1997).
Above. Mirko – Study for the gates to the Fosse Ardeatine – 1949 tempera on lined paper.

Curator Luca Massimo Barbero

  copyright Jack Tworkow, by SIAE 2016 - courtesy – Peggy Guggenheim Collection

Jack Tworkov – Abstract Figure
1949 - oil on canvas
Private collection - courtesy of American Contemporary Art Gallery, Munich

Homage to Jack Tworkov.  The exhibition opens with early works of American Abstract Expressionism. A room is dedicated to the painting of Polish-born American Jack Tworkov, a prominent figure in the postwar art scene in New York.   The rich series of works on paper and five oil paintings documenting show Tworkov’s treatment of a female portrait in the stylistic and formal key of Abstract Expressionism.

Curator Jason Andrew and Jack Tworkov’s daughter, an artist in her own right, Hermine Ford

Robert Motherwell - Personage (Autoportrait)
9 December 1943 - paper collage, gouache, ink on board

In 1943, Motherwell and Jackson Pollock experimented with collage in response to Peggy’s invitation to contribute to an exhibition of collage at her Art of This century gallery in New York. Although Motherwell acknowledged that the work might have elements of self-portrait, Personage (Autoportrait) is readily perceived as a non-referential coloristic and spatial construction.

Reg Butler – Walking Woman

1951 – bronze


Dadamaino - The Facts of Life – Letter No. 12
1980 – Indian ink on paper – detail

The same sign is repeated in varied, spaced, interrupted sequences, as if the work were in constant evolution. The word “letter” comprises the double meaning of alphabet and missive: it is a message with political connotation, in the way that Dadamaino intended “political”: the will to stand for solidarity, freedom and tolerance.

Leslie Thornton – Roundabout
1955 – bronze

“Figures enclosed within structures or emerging from assemblages reflect the human predicament both playful and threatening. I did not set up abstract sculpture in opposition to figurative. A piece of sculpture should be both.  Figurative to the extent that it is a representation of space.  The spaces between and around objects and settings are almost as rich as the objects themselves.”
Leslie Thornton

Carla Accardi – Blue Concentric
1960 – casein on canvas – detail

Color, the dominant element in this painting, generates a vortex of transparent layers.  The vivid blue evokes Accardi’s native Sicilian landscape, the memory of which permeated her work.


Peggy Guggenheim Collection’s Philip Rylands
Giuseppe Santomaso - Lettera a Palladio n.6
1977 – oil on canvas

 Claire Falkenstein – Set Structure with Cylinders
1944 – poplar wood, stain and pigmented lacquer

Claire Falkenstein’s series titled Set Structures consists of unified compositions that can be disassembled into separate parts – “exploding the volume” as she described it, referring to the fact that the state of the object was altered. The Set Structures were based on detailed preparatory drawings, above, which led to her first solo exhibition in New York and to her recognition in a national and international context.

Claire Falkenstein – Entrance gates to the Palazzo
1961 – iron and colored glass

  Photograph  - The Falkenstein Foundation - Courtesy of Michael Rosenfeld Gallery LLC, 
New York, NY

            Claire Falkenstein - Model for Garden Gates
1961 - Painted copper wire and glass
Museum of Fine Arts, Boston - Gift of Mrs. Peggy Guggenheim

The homage to Claire Falkenstein is celebrated for her entrance gates to the museum, commissioned in 1960  by Peggy Guggenheim for her former home, Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, now the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, they have undergone maintenance prior to this exhibition.

Pin It