evie altman
art and stuff

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hilma af klint

oh. my. god. this was one of the best exhibitions i’ve ever seen. she was an abstract expressionist before there were any.

hilma af klint at the guggenheim, which was the absolutely best place to see her stuff. look.

yes, the pot gummy probably enhanced the experience, but this woman was dope! a major feminist and so ahead of her time (early 1900s). and each of her colors/symbols/designs represented very specific ideas in her spirituality and relationship to the world. she and four other women founded the Group of Five, which seems like it was a women’s art collective that fed each other in ideals and visual design.

not much that i can find about her personal life, but it does seem that she had agirlfrien d in the Group of Five that she returned to again and again. maybe i’m imagining it. would love to know more about her.

rode the elevator to the top and walked down the spirals, definitely the better way, even though it may have been meant bottom-top, coz the top explained about her color choices and symbolism that made the bottom, and the separate room of the Ten Largest paintings so much more meaningful. video of the exhibition — here.

random thoughts through the exhibit:

  • much of her art is so subtle and it ended up being so important and here in this major exhibition (yes, more than 100 years later). but when i go subtle, no one understands. is there a fear of showing my real self because it’s subtle and embarrassing if no one notices? but is it?

  • it must be amazing to believe in yourself as a great artist regardless of what the public and critics and everyone else says. just keep going like you’re the top of the totem pole, worthy.

  • my opinion is as important as anyone’s. what do i have to agree with them for?

  • the abstraction can be whatever you want it to be and need not be defined by another’s saying this equals this.

  • the art doesn’t need to be technically perfect. just get your ideas down. (but she was classically trained and did know all the basics and was actually successful as a classical artist with many exhibitions of her realistic stuff before and while she was doing her abstract stuff.) still that question for me. a whole other blog.

  • i could make a big series. some story in abstract. my designs can tell it however i want. feeling, symbol, etc. that can be my exhibition submission for next year. i can work on it simultaneously with all the other stuff i’m working on. could be all large cardboard boxes. do all the stuff i think about. doesn’t matter if they don’t understand. i can explain. no shame in someone not reading my mind. that’s why abstract. and my abstract doesn’t have to be anyone else’s interpretation. just the thought of it is freeing.

anyway, if you are in NYC and can get to the Guggenheim, do it. up through 23 april. wow.