World Receivers: Georgiana Houghton – Hilma af Klint – Emma Kunz
Be entranced and stimulated by the abstract paintings of Hilma af Klimt, Georgiana Houghton and Emma Kunz
Abstract paintings were being produced even before Kandinsky. Completely independently from each other, Georgiana Houghton (1814 – 1884) in England, Hilma af Klint (1862 – 1944) in Sweden and Emma Kunz (1892 – 1963) in Switzerland each developed an individual abstract pictorial language. What they had in common was a desire to make visible the laws of nature, the intellect and the supernatural. Their works are being presented side by side for the first time in an exhibition.
The three women artists all found their artistic language within the context of the spiritual movements of their times: Houghton in spiritism, af Klint in theosophy and Kunz in naturopathy. Their artworks bear witness to a "mediumistic" praxis: Houghton and af Klint were inspired by higher beings to paint, while Kunz developed her drawings with the help of a pendulum.
Wassily Kandinsky is often recognized as the first artist to paint shapes and colors without regard to visual references in the world. However, abstract paintings were being produced even before Kandinsky’s experiments with the form. In the middle of the nineteenth century, in England, Sweden, and Switzerland, respectively, Georgiana Houghton, Hilma af Klint, and Emma Kunz each developed their own abstract pictorial language. Though working completely independently from one another, these three artists shared a desire to make visible the laws of nature, the intellect, and the supernatural. Working within the context of the spiritual movements of their times—Houghton in Spiritism, af Klint in theosophy, and Kunz in naturopathy—they each produced abstract paintings that bore witness to a “mediumistic” praxis. Presenting their works side by side for the first time, World Receivers explores a fascinating and understudied episode of modernism, offering a long-overdue tribute to three expressive women artists.
288 pp. Hardback
22.1cm x 2.8cm x 26.9cm
Published by Hirmer Verlag (May 2019)