TURNER HUGO MOREAU. THE DISCOVERY OF ABSTRACTION
Long before abstraction was declared the art form of the avant-garde in the twentieth century, artists created works without a recognizable object. The most prominent examples are found in the work of the landscape painter J. M. W. Turner, the poet and draftsman Victor Hugo, and the French "Symbolist" Gustave Moreau. Unlike previous presentations, the present exhibition breaks with a perspective concerned with how these works led to abstract art. The central question is not "Where did these abstract works lead?" but rather "In what tradition do they stand?" The exhibition draws viewers' attention to two traditions: first, artists' fascination with spots or images produced by chance; second, reflection on the effect of lines, colors, and compositions in painting. It thus demonstrates that the achievement of the avant-garde around 1912 lay not in the invention of abstraction but in declaring it to be an work of art.
"Turner - Hugo - Moreau. Entdeckung der Abstraktion." Edited by Raphael Rosenberg and Max Hollein. With a foreword by Max Hollein and texts by Raphael Rosenberg.