13 NOVEMBER – 11 DECEMBER 2016
This presentation of paper works reveals Kuttner’s studious investigation of kinetic movement, an interest that persisted throughout his career. The four years (1961–1964) during which these works were produced were marked by a study of movement that laid the groundwork for his subsequent practice. In comparison to his psychedelic fluorescent paintings, first shown at the gallery in 2005 in an exhibition entitled “Hasard,” they are reflective studies of natural phenomena: air, water, thunder, and sound.
After emigrating to West Germany in 1960 to escape the repressive conditions in the GDR, Kuttner produced a body of work with a distinctive formal vocabulary. In the small-format drawings from 1962, the lines drawn evoke an interrupted staccato as exemplified in “A-Z lala”, “Bach”, and “Senkrechte Musik.” The movement and interference suggested by the musical references, musical notes overlaid onto pre-existing text, foreshadow the turbulent times of the late 1960s in Germany. Smudges and splotches are common tropes utilized by the artist as an accompaniment to the gestural swirls presented in the exemplary “Air-Water” (1962). The sporadic gesture applied to notepaper is suggestive of an abstract turbulence, which reoccurs in “Pearl Thunderstorm” (1962). With a precise technological study of form, the artist demonstrates his interests in composition and geometry. The dynamism with which he manages to transform a line into a multidimensional form is a formidable technique that Kuttner mastered throughout his career.