Sophie Taeuber-Arp’s Vanishing Lines

Group of Works:

2015Animation, HD video, 10:10, loop, stereo. Audio: Silvia Pachler.

In what is, prima facie, a mesh of abstract lines, no few of the works that Sophie Taeuber-Arp completed between 1940 and 1942 in her exile in southern France manifest a symbolism of war, persecution and flight. The compositions of lively, curved lines have, in part, something lost, floating, broken, irrational about them. At times they seem to be deliberately ‘chaotic’, which, in all Taeuber-Arp’s earlier works, would have been wholly uncharacteristic. Yet for all the horrifying events hinted at, these drawings are highly aesthetic entities. In Taeuber-Arp’s cycle of works entitled ‘Lignes…’, an aspect of DADA re-emerges – the (meaning-denying) art of refugees from war.

The animation, which combines eight of her works from the ‘Lignes’ series with photographs from WW2, shows the connection and the discrepancy between Taeuber-Arp’s artistic activity and the world of war and persecution. To that extent, ‘Vanishing Lines’ also refers to her inner flight from reality. The video thereby highlights a dilemma facing artists to this day, of making art in a time of injustice and violence. There is good reason to animate Sophie Taeuber-Arp’s compositions, as she developed a striking number of variations out of the same basic elements for her series and because dance, movement and rhythm play an important role throughout her œuvre.

Installation: large-scale projection (perfect loop) as solo exhibit in the blacked-out space. Abruptly alternating light and dark pictures make for an exhibition space now lit relatively brightly, now dark.

Related Exhibitions

(Due to the web construction works, partly transitional links to the archive of Myriam Thyes.)

See also the work

  • Linien im Krieg, 2017-2018, 7 digital graphics on handmade paper, mounted on wood, 50 x 170-180 x 2 cm each.

Downloads

Videos


Shown in the following exhibitions


Works of the same Group of Works