SLAM Takes a Hard Look at Abstract Art in Printmaking

[Music] printing abstraction is an exhibition that’s a deep dive into abstraction from 1960 to the present and it’s a companion exhibition to graphic revolution which is a survey of the period of printmaking in contemporary art so abstraction is a form of art that moves away from representation or something that would be recognizable from the natural world around us it’s an art form that turns solely to line shape color form alone it’s a way of thinking about how images are made how can it be visually compelling with a minimal amount of visual elements and it’s this idea in art of deconstructing traditions for moving away from representation moving away from telling a specific story and really just thinking about the visual qualities of the work this exhibition is broken down into a couple of different sections that look specifically at parallel strains or parallel trends that were taking place during the past five or so decades hard-edged abstraction which is very linear very clear crisp color op art which was all about dazzling the eye and optical effects pop and abstractions the idea that you could make abstract works that draw from popular culture and then also thinking about your environment and how you can observe the environment around you and distill those experiences into abstract work so one thing I wanted to do in this exhibition is to show examples of works by some of those kind of founding figures who really planted the flag in the ground for abstraction in the 20th century and one of those is Marcel Duchamp an abstraction was one of his passions and he specifically at one moment was thinking very much about how you could make optical illusions with just you know shapes printed on a disk that we would put on a turntable and spin and create almost this vortex like effect and he wanted to study those ideas of the psychologies of perception there’s a video that’s a companion to the object which is static in the display case because we don’t want to wear out the motor so a great solution working with the conservation staff was to video the work in motion and so you can have that approximation of the experience of the optical illusion here in the galleries works may appear at first glance to be very similar or it aren’t historically there are many different ways artists have worked and abstractly over the past six decades and so this exhibition I wanted to tell that history I wanted our visitors to really understand that and come away with a greater appreciation of abstraction and just a really greater knowledge of the nuances of the form [Music]

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