León Ferrari and Mira Schendel "Tangled Alphabets"

The Museum of Modern Art

poster for León Ferrari and Mira Schendel "Tangled Alphabets"

This event has ended.

"Tangled Alphabets" is the first major museum retrospective in the United States to survey work of León Ferrari (Argentine, b. 1920) and Mira Schendel (Brazilian, b. Switzerland, 1919-1988), and to explore their significant contributions to contemporary art. Working separately over several decades in neighboring Latin American countries during the latter half of the twentieth century, each created an oeuvre of conceptual works of art fundamentally based in language. At a time when Western artists were incorporating letters, words, text, and language as a functional component of their art, Ferrari and Schendel distinctively addressed language as a major visual subject matter, considering the material body of language, its manifestation as a written word, and its use as a metaphor to understand the human world. As contemporaries, though never collaborators, the two artists shared experiences of disillusion and exile that informed the parallels and divergences in the art they produced.

[Image: TOP: León Ferrari "Untitled I (detail)" (1984) Oil stick and pastel on hardboard 31.5 x 39.375 in. Collection Cesare Rivetti © 2009 Fundación Augusto y León Ferrari. Archivo y Colección, Buenos Aires. BOTTOM: Mira Schendel "Untitled from the series 'Objetos gráficos' (Graphic objects) (detail)" (1967-68) Oil transfer drawing on thin Japanese paper between painted transparent acrylic sheets 35.5 x 38.2 in. © 2009 Mira Schendel Estate]



from April 05, 2009 to June 15, 2009

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