Living Abstraction ”will take you back to your childhood – Washington Square News

MoMA’s current retrospective about the cult Dada artist Sophie Teubur-Arp inspires wisdom with her colorful aesthetics and wide range of disciplines.

“Sophie Taber-Arp: Living Abstraction” is a show that inspires a return to innocence, discovering the world of geometric abstraction of Sophie Taber-Arp. Her works are read like a woven blanket regardless of the environment, and the bright use of color is an aesthetic pleasure for museum visitors.

The entrance to the exposition is an escape from the concrete jungle and an entrance into the world of fantasy. One of the latest retrospectives at the Museum of Contemporary Art, which runs until March 12, chronologically depicts the work of Swiss artist Teuber-Arp, who lived from 1889-1943.

Nick Aluf. Sophie Taber with her head added. 1920. Gelatin silver imprint on board. 4 5/8 x 3 3/4) (11.7 x 9.6 cm). Stiftung Arp eV, Berlin. Photo: Wolfgang Morell

Teuber-Arp was an artist of the turn of the century who blurred the line between practicality and artistry. She showed that design can intersect with everyday objects – from her “Chapter”Sculpture (1920) to beaded bags, pillows and furniture. Her work is extremely detailed, with close attention paid to balance and pattern.

Sophie Teuber-Arp. Geometric shapes (bead bag). 1918. Glass beads, metal beads, thread, cord and fabric. Height: 5 1/8 inches (13 cm), diameter: 6 cm. Museum für Gestaltung, Zürcher Hochschule der Künste, Zurich. Collection of arts and crafts. Provided by the Zurich Gestalt Museum, ZHdK

The retrospective begins with the beginning of her career as an art teacher and artisan. The exhibition space is huge and includes several of her original sketches and 2-D fragments of the grid. As you walk through the gallery, a playful harmony emerges between smaller, more sophisticated textiles and larger rugs. You can observe the accuracy and detail of her art in various media, such as fine beadwork and embroidery, which can be seen in “Bead Bags” (circa 1918).

What is particularly striking about this exhibition is that, despite the range of media, there is a consistent aesthetic in all of Taber-Arp’s work. Her use of geometric abstraction and color combinations makes bright, joyful colors work in perfect harmony. The work “Oval composition with abstract motifs” is made with such delicacy and understanding that on a dark background bright geometric figures subtly come out.

The exhibition successfully reflects the spaces of Taber Arp’s artistic career and the spirit of the Dodaists. Dadaism is an artistic movement that originated at the place of death of Teuber-Arp, Zurich, Switzerland. The reaction to the catastrophic events of the First World War is characterized by a satirical and senseless movement.

Sophie Teuber-Arp. Pillow panel. 1916 Wool on canvas. 20 7/8 × 20 1/2) (53 × 52 cm). Museum of Gestaltung, Zürcher Hochschule der Künste, Zurich. Collection of arts and crafts. Provided by the Zurich Gestalt Museum, ZHdK

Dada lives through Teuber-Arp’s playfulness with unconventional means: from goods that can be worn, such as beaded bags and jewelry, to pillows with red-winged creatures and blue and green zigzag patterns.

Another unique feature of the exhibition is the puppet room. The figures inside were commissioned by Teuber-Arp in 1918 for a film adaptation of Carl Goza’s play The Deer King. The Teuber-Arp puppets, like her paintings and engravings, play with geometric shapes and colors to enliven the story. The history of kings, wizards and magical surrealism comes to life thanks to the use of exaggerated forms and geometric expressions.

Sophie Teuber-Arp. Guards (puppet for the deer king). 1918 Metallic paint and oil on wood; metal fittings. Height: 21 7/8 inches (55.5 cm), diameter: 18 cm. Museum für Gestaltung, Zürcher Hochschule der Künste, Zurich. Collection of arts and crafts. Provided by the Zurich Gestalt Museum, ZHdK

In recent years, Taiber-Arp was exiled to the south of France during the Nazi occupation and worked with print media and images, the latter of which have fine lines and lack its usual color. Teuber-Arp died from accidental carbon monoxide poisoning in 1943. To this day, she remains one of the most famous artists of the Dadaist movement and one of the first women artists to achieve international success. The exhibition includes about 300 works that continue to challenge our understanding of how we define fine art, craft and design.

“Sophie Taber-Arp: Living Abstraction” can be seen at the Museum of Modern Art until March 12.

Contact Natalia Palasina Camargo at [email protected]

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