|- Pop Art - Tinguely|
Jean Tinguely was born in Fribourg in Switzerland in 1925. Three years after his birth his family went to Basle, where he spent his youth. As a young man Richard Hamilton worked in advertising and commercial art. In 1955 Jean Tinguely participated in the exhibition "Le Mouvement" in Denise René's gallery in Paris. The exhibition curated by the director of the Swedish "Moderna Museet" J. K. Hultén was an exhibition devoted to movement in art. It presented works by Calder, some of Duchamp's rotating disks and new works by Victor Vasarelly.Tinguely showed reliefs and motorized wire sculptures as well as a his meta-matic robot which walked araound and drew pictures.
Jean Tinguely: Für Statik. 1958
Fig.: Jean Tinguely with one of his meta-matics in Paris
Für Statik/ For
Stop insisting on 'values' which can only break down. Be free, live. Stop painting time. Stop evoking movements and gestures. You are movement and gesture. Stop building cathedrals and pyramids which are doomed to fall into ruin. Live in the present, live once more in Time and by Time - for a wonderful and absolute reality."
Another important exhibition was Yves Klein's "Le Vide" exhibition in Paris which took place in the gallery Iris Clert in Paris. Tinguely persuaded Klein that they would have to do a show together and this show, "Pure Speed and Monochrome Stability" was shown in the same gallery a few months later that year.
Jean Tinguely: Homage à New York. 1961
Fig.: Homage à New York.
New York" a show in the Museum of Modern Art in New York was probably
his most adventorous work of art. When Tinguely came to New York Dr. Richard
Huelsenbeck a former Dadaist and now psychiatrist, invited Tinguely to
stay in his apartment for three months. Huelsenbeck called Tinguely a
"Meta-Dadaist, who fulfilled certain ideas of ours, noteably the
idea of motion." He introduced Tinguely, who then spoke almost no
English into the New York art scene and arranged meetings of a group of
young artists including Robert Rauschenberg, Jasper Johns, John Chamberlain
and Marcel Duchamp. Even though these friends told him that he would never
have a show in the Modern Art Museum and that he should rather rent an
empty warehouse or loft, Tinguely persuaded the director Renè d'Harnoncourt
to have a show in the museum.
Calvin Tomkins: Ahead of the Game. Four Versions of Avantgarde. Penguin Books Harmondsworth, Middlesex, England 1968.