RADICAL GEOMETRY

Juan Melé, Irregular Frame No. 2, 1946. Oil on plywood. 71.1 x 50.2 x 2.5 cm. Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros. © Estate of Juan Melé.
Juan Melé,
Irregular Frame No. 2, 1946.
Oil on plywood. 71.1 x 50.2 x 2.5 cm. Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros. © Estate of Juan Melé.
Joaquín Torres-García, Construction in White and Black, 1938. Oil on paper mounted on wood. 80.7 x 102 cm. The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of Patricia Phelps de Cisneros in honour of David Rockefeller, 2004. Photo Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros
Joaquín Torres-García,
Construction in White and Black, 1938.
Oil on paper mounted on wood. 80.7 x 102 cm. The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of Patricia Phelps de Cisneros in honour of David Rockefeller, 2004. Photo Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The time: 1930s. The place: South America. The stage was set for a major innovation in art. Over the next 50 years, artists across five cities would pioneer a new visual language to express their deeply held beliefs about art and its power to change the world around them. Radical Geometry brings together work from the Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros by some of the great innovators of South American modern art, from Torres-García in Uruguay to Lygia Clark in Brazil, from Maldonado in Argentina to Gego in Venezuela. Inspired by European artists such as Mondrian and Kandinsky, their bold experiments with space, movement and color radically transformed the relationship between art and viewer. This is art that refuses to be contained by its own perimeter, art that ruptures the boundary between the object and the space around it and introduces dynamic forms to give the illusion of motion and volatility. You will see work that changes as you move around it, and “drawings without paper” that use negative space and shadow to create unique, fleeting compositions.

Text: Royal Academy of Art

Geraldo de Barros, Diagonal Function, 1952. Lacquer on plywood. 62.9 x 62.9 x 1.3 cm. Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros. © Fabiana and Lenora de Barros.
Geraldo de Barros,
Diagonal Function, 1952.
Lacquer on plywood. 62.9 x 62.9 x 1.3 cm. Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros. © Fabiana and Lenora de Barros.
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Alfredo Hlito, Chromatic Rhythms II, 1947. Oil on canvas. 69.9 x 70.2 cm. Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros. © Sonia Henríquez Ureña de Hlito.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tomás Maldonado, Development of 14 Themes, 1951-52. Oil on canvas. 200.3 x 210.2 cm. Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros. © Tomás Maldonado.
Tomás Maldonado,
Development of 14 Themes, 1951-52.
Oil on canvas. 200.3 x 210.2 cm. Colección Patricia Phelps de Cisneros. © Tomás Maldonado.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Look inside Radical Geometry Video

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