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HEINZ MACK: LIGHT SHADOW

May 16 – September 20, 2015

 

The major summer exhibition 2015 shows the reliefs of Heinz Mack (born in 1931), which were central to his plastic-sculptural work. In 1957/58, along with Otto Piene, Mack founded the group ZERO, which was joined shortly afterward by Günther Uecker. He took part in documenta on numerous occasions, and represented Germany at the Venice Biennale in 1970. The central artistic motif of his diverse oeuvre is the portrayal of light in its various manifestations.

It is through his non-objective sculptures and, especially, his reliefs, that Heinz Mack finds his way to his own specific light design. Not only does he work with the lively interplay of light and shade, he also makes use of different, mainly glossy materials to explore the effects of light.

It was in the mid-1950s that Mack began working on reliefs and he has continued ever since, using the most diverse materials and techniques. His works range from small, pocket-sized formats to extensive fields, which he draws in the desert sands. Hence, Mack is one of the proponents of “Land Art”, which has established itself since the late 1960s, when it emerged as a reaction to the expansion of our horizons through space travel.

Through the plastic structure of his surfaces and the varying light-responsiveness of his selected materials, light is reflected, absorbed and scattered. This results in structures of impressive clarity and surprising vibrancy. The exhibition shows works from all the artist’s creative phases and was developed in close cooperation with Heinz Mack.


AT THE SAME TIME

FONTANA, ZERO AND THE RESULTS

At the same time, Museum Frieder Burda presents a cabinet exhibition on the artists’ group ZERO. The movement, founded by Heinz Mack and Otto Piene in 1957/58, and which also included Günther Uecker from 1961, developed optimistic visions and novel concepts for transcending traditional categories and techniques. Unusual materials such as synthetic resin, aluminium, glass and nails were arranged as monochrome objects; fire was used as a sculptural means for vibrating smoke images and reflective surfaces were transformed into visual experiences. In addition to dynamic visual techniques such as grids, structures, arrangement and rhythm, light and movement became essential design elements. Other associates and participants of international ZERO exhibitions including Adolf Luther and Christian Megert are also on show.

In addition, the exhibition displays works by Lucio Fontana and Yves Klein, who were not only a vital source of ideas for the ZERO group, but also for the next generation, which is represented with works by Gerhard Richter, Imi Knoebel and Günther Förg from the Collection Frieder Burda.