In 1964 the industrialist Friedrich Arnhard Scheidt invited Eva Hesse (1936–1970) and her husband, Tom Doyle, to a residency in Kettwig an der Ruhr, Germany. The following fifteen months marked a significant transformation in Hesse’s practice. The artist’s studio space was located in an abandoned textile factory that contained machine parts, tools, and materials that served as inspiration for her complex, linear mechanical drawings and paintings. In 1965 Hesse expanded on this theme and began using objects found in the factory and papier-mâché to produce a series of fourteen vibrantly colored reliefs that venture into three-dimensional space with such materials as wood, metal, and cord protruding from the picture plane. With dynamic new scholarship and previously unpublished illustrations, Eva Hesse 1965 highlights key drawings, paintings, and reliefs from this pivotal time and demonstrates how the artist was able to rethink her approach to color, materials, and dimensional space and begin moving toward sculpture, preparing herself for the momentous strides that she would take upon her return to New York.
As Lippard points out, Hesse's use of obsessive repetition in her works served to increase and exaggerate the absurdity she saw in her life. In many ways, her works were ”psychic models,” as Robert Smithson has said, of ”a very interior person.” In pioneering the use of ”soft” materials, her sculptures betrayed her awareness of the manner in which her experience as a woman altered her art and career. Although she died before feminism affected the art world to any great extent, her major works have since become talismans for succeeding generations of women artists. Eva Hesse was designed by Hesse's friends and colleagues Sol LeWitt and Pat Stier; her sculptures, drawings, and paintings are reproduced and discussed; and the text includes numerous quotations from her diaries. First published in 1976 but long out-of-print, this classic text is both an insightful critical analysis and a tribute to an artist whose genius has become increasingly apparent with the passage of time.
This monumental tome contains the entirety of the important German artist's drawings held in the collection of the Allen Memorial Art Museum, Oberlin College, Ohio. The AMAM was the first museum to purchase a sculpture by Hesse, Laocoon, in 1970. In gratitude for its recognition of Hesse's work, and following the artist's untimely death, her sister Helen Hesse Charash generously donated the artist's notebooks, diaries, sketchbooks, photographs and letters to the museum. Hesse's drawings played a crucial role in her work, which in turn gave way to an array of highly innovative techniques and styles that today still defy classification. As she commented in 1970: "I had a great deal of difficulty with painting but never with drawing ... the translation or transference to a large scale and in painting was always tedious.... So I started working in relief and with line." Hesse's custom of introducing sculptural materials into drawing and painting continues to influence artmaking today. Eva Hesse (1936-70) was one of the foremost artists of the 20th century. Her work combined the seriality and reductionism of 1960s minimalism with emotion, sensuousness and physicality. Her work is in the collections of the Museum of Modern Art, Tate, Guggenheim and many others.
Throughout her career, Eva Hesse produced a significant number of small, experimental works which she renamed 'studiowork'. This title contains a comprehensive catalogue of the studiowork, including many new works that have never before been seen in public.
Eva Hesse’s later works are fascinating—not least because of her unusual materials Eva Hesse (1936–1970) is one of the foremost artists of the twentieth century. Born in Hamburg, she immigrated to New York via the Netherlands in 1938. Even though Hesse died of a brain tumor at the age of just thirty-four, she left behind a fascinating, highly individual body of work. In the mid-sixties she began experimenting with new materials that had never before been used to produce art objects, such as polyester, fiberglass, and latex. Hesse’s sculptures, which are now included in the collections of major museums around the world, are unique combinations of complex and occasionally contradictory qualities, such as hard and soft, fragile and substantial, abstract and figuratively evocative. This lavishly illustrated book concentrates on sculptures and drawings from the years 1966 to 1970, the last phase of the American artist’s work. -- Publisher’s description.
Irrational Judgments examines the close friendship and significant exchange of ideas between Eva Hesse (1936–1970) and Sol LeWitt (1928–2007) in New York City during the 1960s. Taking its title from LeWitt’s statement “Irrational judgments lead to new experience,” this book examines the breakthroughs of the artists’ intertwined careers, offering a new understanding of minimal, post-minimal, and conceptual art amid the era’s political and social upheavals. Kirsten Swenson offers the first in-depth discussion of the early critical developments of each artist: LeWitt’s turn from commercial design to fine art, and Hesse’s move from expressionist painting to reliefs and sculpture. Bringing together a wealth of documents, interviews, and images—many published here for the first time—this handsome publication presents an insightful account of the artists’ influence on and support for each other’s pursuit of an experimental practice. Swenson’s analysis expands our understanding of the artists’ ideas, the importance of their work, and, more broadly, the relationship of the 1960s New York art world to gender politics, the Vietnam War, and the city itself.
The work of Eva Hesse (1936-1970), one of the greatest American artists of the 1960s, continues to inspire and to endure in large part because of its deeply emotional and evocative qualities. Her latex and fiberglass sculptures in particular have a resonance that transcends the boundaries of minimalist art in which she had her roots. Hesse's breakthrough solo exhibition--"Chain Polymers at the Fischbach Gallery in New York in 1968--was a turning point in postwar American art. "Eva Hesse: Sculpture focuses on the artist's large-scale sculptures in latex and fiberglass and provides a rare opportunity to look at Hesse's artistic achievement within the historical context of her life in never-before-seen family diaries and photographs. Essays consider Hesse's art from a variety of angles: Elisabeth Sussman discusses the sculptures shown in the 1968 solo exhibition; Fred Wasserman delves into the Hesse family's life in Nazi Germany and in the German Jewish community in New York in the 1940s; Yve-Alain Bois examines Hesse's works within the context of the art and aesthetic theories of the 1960s; and Mark Godfrey analyzes the importance of Hesse's celebrated hanging sculptures of 1969-70. In addition to color reproductions of the artist's sculpture, the book features a copiously illustrated chronology of the artist's life.