Gestural abstraction in painting dominated public discourse in the mid-20th century—you’ll find prominent examples of such works in the adjacent gallery (1200). Yet many artists in the United States, Europe, and Latin America investigated alternative ways of creating abstract art. Informed by a keen awareness of historical precedents, including collage and geometric abstraction, and sometimes fueled by the material limi-tations of economic and social circumstances, these artists experimented freely. Photographers pushed the boundaries of abstraction in studies of flatness, geometries, and patterns. Dynamic new art forms incorporated found objects and industrial materials, evoking the artists’ experiences of both the built environment and the natural world.
In recent years, the Harvard Art Museums have broadened efforts to collect and display the global networks of artistic exchange and development. We aim to present a more diverse and nuanced represen-tation of modern artistic developments around the world and their