Indepth Arts News: |
"Concordance: Alfred Jensen"
2001-09-19 until 2001-12-30
Dia Center for the Arts
New York, NY,
Concordance, an exhibition of key works by the painter Alfred
Jensen (1903-81), opens at Dia Center for the Arts on September
19, 2001. Included are large-scale multi-part paintings that
span the artist's mature career. Composed in checkerboard,
wheel-like, and other patterns, they elaborate Jensen's complex
cosmological theories. A highlight of the show will be Jensen's
final artistic statement, the monumental Great Pyramid
(1979), which will be on public exhibition for the first time.
Jensen was in many ways an autodidact, his aesthetic informed
by the study of a broad range of esoteric interests, including
the color theories of Goethe, the writings of Leonardo da
Vinci, Pythagorean geometry, Mayan and ancient Chinese
calendars, the I Ching, Greek religious rituals, and Michael
Faraday's theories of electromagnetic forces.
Jensen's highly individual style matured at the end of the
1950s. Although related to the work of certain Abstract
Expressionists, notably Mark Rothko, his work can be read in
relation to the systems of measurement, chronology, and
duration developed by certain artists of the 1960s and 1970s,
such as Alighiero e Boetti, Hanne Darboven, and On Kawara, who
have exhibited at Dia.
Although Jensen's unique fusion of metaphysics, sign systems,
and painterly handling made him something of an outsider, he
exhibited widely in New York and Europe through the 1960s and
1970s. In 1977 he represented the United States at the
fourteenth So Paulo Bienal with work that subsequently
traveled to six U.S. cities. In 1985, a posthumous
retrospective was held at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New
York. Jensen's paintings are in the permanent collections of
major museums in the United States, Europe, and Japan.
Alfred Jensen was born in 1903 in Guatemala to a Danish father
and a Polish-German mother. He spent his early years in
Denmark; in the mid-1920s, among other training, he briefly
attended Hans Hoffman's art school in Munich and academies in
Paris. He traveled widely until 1951, when he settled in New
Support for this exhibition has been provided by the members of
the Dia Art Council.