ArtCircle presents a group exhibition featuring work by ten artists associated with minimalism and post-minimalism in the 1960s and 1970s. Entitled THE ESSENCE OF THINGS, it is ArtCircle’s second presentation and is curated by Berlin-based curator and gallerist Daniel Marzona. The exhibition includes works by Carl Andre, Richard Tuttle and François Morellet.
Beginning in the late 1950s, artists on both sides of the Atlantic began to question the emphasis on interior subjectivity in the then-dominant movements of Abstract Expressionism and Art Informel. Their inquiries led to a paring-back of art making to its essentials: the use of industrial materials, simple geometric forms, serial or other systems, and a focus on the physical object in space, drawing attention to the materiality of the works themselves rather than any overt symbolic or emotional content.
THE ESSENCE OF THINGS seeks to extend the narrative of minimal art to a wider circle of European and American artists who purposefully and radically eschewed conventional aesthetic appeal. While some of these focused on cool geometricity and systematic formal arrangements, others explored the poetic properties of materials like wood, iron or paper. Though differing in approach, all the works in the exhibition propose a rigorous testing of the essence of art.
‘The exhibition explores the essence of materials and forms showing that the formal clarity and simplicity of a work does not reduce the complexity of its perception. Or as Robert Morris put it, “Simplicity of shape does not necessarily equate with simplicity of experience”.’ – Says Marzona
Artists featured in the show include Carl Andre, Stephen Antonakos, Bernd Lohaus, Günther Uecker, Pier Paolo Calzolari, Herman de Vries, Richard Tuttle, Jef Verheyen, François Morellet, among others.
In keeping with ArtCircle’s business concept, THE ESSENCE OF THINGS is a pop-up show, and will be staged on the first floor of 48 Albemarle Street, a four storey-white stucco building in the heart of Mayfair. It is the second of three presentations to be mounted in London this year; others will follow in cities around the world.
Founded by Natasha Chagoubatova, Elena Sereda and German gallerist Volker Diehl, ArtCircle works with museums, commercial galleries, collectors and artists’ estates to stage short-term selling exhibitions featuring works by artists of historical importance. Central to its philosophy is to work closely with internationally renowned curators and art historians, which enables the organisation to realise museum-quality, scholarly shows on a more intimate scale than might otherwise be possible.