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Eva Hesse: A Retrospective : Exhibition and Catalogue [Hardcover]

Helen A. Cooper


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Book Description

June 1992
Eva Hesse (1936-1970) has long been recognized as a sculptor of exceptional talent and prodigious influence. The public has rarely seen her work, however, because its fragility has made it difficult to exhibit. Hesse was an expressionist in an age of minimalism. Against the dominant, largely impersonal visual modes of the 1960s, she insisted on the subjective qualities of her art. She opened up frontiers in sculpture - in form, content, material, and logic - and helped to change the way artists, critics, and viewers look at art. Hesse's career also coincided with the incubation period of modern feminism, and her art stands as a courageous and complex effort to articulate a female identity. The book includes essays by six noted authorities: Linda Norden discusses Hesse's early career in New York following her years as a student of Josef Albers; Maria Keutzer writes on Hesse's work in Germany in the mid-1960s when she moved from the two-dimensional to the three-dimensional; Maurice Berger examines Hesse's radical and personal approach to the sculptural object following her rejection of painting; Helen Cooper draws on the artist's extensive diaries, notebooks, and correspondence to explore her first ideas for works, working procedures, and materials; Anna Chave analyzes Hesse's mature work in light of contemporary feminist theory on authorship and subjectivity; and Robert Storr places Hesse in relation to the central American artistic concerns of the 1960s, focusing on her links with such artists as Jasper Johns, Sol LeWitt, and Claes Oldenburg. This book, which brings together Hesse's most important sculptures, reliefs, and her rarely seen drawings and early paintings, is the catalogue for an exhibition of Hesse's work that will open at the Yale University Art Gallery in April 1992 and travel to the Hirshhorn Museum in Washington D.C.

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