- Gallery Text
After World War II, Götz emerged in Germany as a major proponent of abstract painting, known more broadly as art informel. In 1952 he abandoned oil paint for casein (a milk-based paint), which he applied to canvas primed with glue and then quickly manipulated with a blade or hard-edged squeegee. In June 1954/II, dynamic black forms on the white surface, highlighted with touches of blue, complicate the relationship between figure and ground, creating, as one critic called it at the time, “whipped space.” This work is the product of a few concentrated flicks of the wrist and sweeps of the arm, but by the late 1950s Götz’s canvases had grown in size to rival those of his American contemporaries and demanded the movement of the artist’s entire body. Like Jackson Pollock, Götz placed his canvases flat on the floor, but he used an array of long-handled brushes and tools of his own design to create his signature style.
- Identification and Creation
Level 1, Room 1200, Modern and Contemporary Art, Mid–century Abstraction I
View this object's location on our interactive map
- Physical Descriptions
- Wallpaper paste and casein paint on canvas
- 70 x 70 cm (27 9/16 x 27 9/16 in.)
framed: 71.4 × 71.4 × 3.2 cm (28 1/8 × 28 1/8 × 1 1/4 in.)
- Inscriptions and Marks
- Signed: l.l., in black paint: K.O. Götz
- inscription: on verso, on canvas in black paint: K.O. Götz//Juni 1954/II//Karin Götz zugeeignet//July 76
- inscription: on verso, on stretcher in black: Eigentum Karin Götz
- label: on verso, on stretcher, on label: Sammlung Karin Götz (Rissa)
- The artist, gift; to a private collection, 1976, gift; to the Busch-Reisinger Museum, 2012
- State, Edition, Standard Reference Number
- Standard Reference Number
- Ströher 1954-55
- Acquisition and Rights
- Credit Line
- Harvard Art Museums/Busch-Reisinger Museum, Anonymous gift
- © K.O. Götz / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
- Accession Year
- Object Number
- Modern and Contemporary Art
- The Harvard Art Museums encourage the use of images found on this website for personal, noncommercial use, including educational and scholarly purposes. To request a higher resolution file of this image, please submit an online request.
- Publication History
K. O. Götz, K. O. Götz. Erinnerungen und Werk, Concept Verlag (Düsseldorf, Germany, 1983), Vol. I, p. 681, cat. no. 765, col. ill.
Kunsthalle Düsseldorf, ed., K.O. Götz. Monotypien, Gemälde, Gouachen 1935-1983, exh. cat. (Düsseldorf, Germany, 1985), p. 129, cat. no. 50, p. 68, col. ill.
Ina Hesselmann, K. O. Götz. Werkverzeichnis in zwei Bänden, Wienand Verlag (Cologne, Germany, 2014), p. 171, cat. no. 1954-55, col. ill.
Cate McQuaid, "'Inventur' looks at German art in the wake of WWII", The Boston Globe (Boston, MA, 2018)
Lynette Roth, Inventur—Art in Germany, 1943–55, exh. cat., Harvard Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2018), pp. 372-374, cat. no. 53.1, ill. (color)
- Exhibition History
K. O. Götz. Monotypien, Gemälde, Gouachen 1935-1983, Städtische Kunsthalle Düsseldorf, 06/16/1984 - 07/22/1984; Modern Gallery of the Saarlandmuseum, 09/07/1984 - 10/07/1984; Galerie der Stadt Esslingen, Villa Merkel, 12/14/1984 - 01/27/1985
K. O. Götz, Oberhessisches Landesmuseum im Alten Schloss, 03/13/1985 - 05/12/1985
K. O. Götz, MB Art Galerie Marlies Breitling, 01/01/1987 - 01/01/1987
32Q: 1200 Mid-Century Abstraction I (Painterly Abstraction), Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 11/16/2014 - 01/10/2018; Harvard Art Museums, Cambridge, 08/09/2018 - 01/01/2050
- Related Articles
This record has been reviewed by the curatorial staff but may be incomplete. Our records are frequently revised and enhanced. For more information please contact the Division of Modern and Contemporary Art at email@example.com