Composing the Space

Sculptures in the Avant-Garde – A Reader

This publication follows the experiments in avant-garde sculpture in its dialogue with the space, movement and human body, guided by the theory and practice of Polish artist, Katarzyna Kobro (1898–1951).

For the first time Kobro’s artistic experiments is presented in the context of corresponding sculptural endeavours such artists as Vladimir Tatlin, Naum Gabo, Friedrich Kiesler, and El Lissitzky.

In Kobro’s view, the dynamism of our motor skills should be counterbalanced with a carefully measured and organised sequence of plastic (sculptural, architectural) rhythms unfolding in both time and space.

According to Kobro, sculpture was becoming a model of the new order to be potentially introduced in our immediate environment based on a psychophysical coordination of human beings leading to a rationalised and purposeful construction of the space of every-day life as well shaping social behaviours.

This book confronts her ideas with the work of her Modernist contemporaries such as Naum Gabo, Alexander Calder, Barbara Hepworth, Gustaw Klucis, El Lissitzky, Antoine Pevsner, Jean Arp, Alexander Archipenko, Friedrich Kiesler, Vladimir Tatlin, and Oskar Schlemmer in order to show the full scope of the avant-garde experiment in sculpture.

Featuring writings by renowned American art critic Rosalind E. Krauss, and French-American art historian Yve-Alain Bois.

Published on the occasion of the exhibition, Composing the Space: Sculptures in the Avant-Garde at Muzeum Sztuki, Łódź (4 October 2019 – 2 February 2020).

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