Spotlight on Gego

19Nov09

Gego (Gertrude Goldschmidt), one of the most important artists of the Venezuelan constructivist movement, was born in Hamburg, Germany in 1912 and moved to Venezuela in 1939. During her first decades in Caracas she worked as an architect and designer of furniture, and taught architecture at the Universidad Central de Venezuela in Caracas. In the 1950s, Gego became committed to the art of abstraction, and she began experimenting with the conversion of planes into three-dimensional forms through drawing, watercolor, engraving, collage and sculpture. Her interest was to explore architectural space based on the elements of line and movement.

In Gego’s work, the use of the line as a constructive module became one of the most important elements in her art. She believed that the line could express what is not physically present in nature – including thought, intuition and emotion. Her work of the 1960s was made of industrial materials such as steel, wire, lead and nylon to create delicate nets and grid-like forms that play with space, movement and shadow. One of her most significant series from this period is Reticuláreas, made of aluminum and steel that are interwoven nets and webs suspended in space. The two Reticuláreas on view in the exhibition are important examples of her abstract art, which emphasize a focus on endless lines and a repetitive layering of threads to shape space.

Image credits:

GEGO, Reticulárea Cuadrada, 1972, Courtesy the artist and The Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation, Miami

Photo: Oriol Tarridas

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