Otto Piene

Alchemist and Stormer of the Skies

As a co-founder (along with Heinz Mack) of the Düsseldorf-based ZERO artist group/movement, Otto Piene (1928 – 2014) is considered a major protagonist in post-war abstract art.

After the break up of ZERO at Bahnhof Rolandseck in 1966, he continued to develop his oeuvre in the most varied of materials for the remainder of his life.

With a focus on recurring motifs, such as the circle as a symbol of the cosmos, the catalogue reflects on a wide range of his creative output, from the early pattern, fire and smoke pieces, to the heavier pottery and the lighter air and light work.

Astounding parallels become clear when the work is placed in dialogue with selected pieces by Lucio Fontana, bringing to life the way art expands from the image into a sensory spatial experience.

Published on the occasion of the exhibition, Otto Piene: Alchemist und Himmelsstürmer / Alchemist and Stormer of the Skies at Arp Museum Bahnhof Rolandseck (18 March 2019 – 5 February 2020).

English and German text.

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