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Jesús Rafael Soto is one of the most famed artists of the Kinetic art movement that swept through Argentina, Venezuela, and Uruguay in the mid-twentieth century. As a pioneer of Kinetic art – a work of art that creates a physical or optical sense of movement – Soto explored perception through the manipulation of color and new industrial materials such as nylon, metal, and plexiglass. A true innovator, Soto’s work rejects figuration and total abstraction. Rather Soto’s art conveys movement through either physical or optical terms and explores the perception of physical space through pictorial means. Soto was featured in the 1955 manifesto created for the landmark exhibition Le Mouvement on Kinetic Art at the Galerie Denise Rene in Paris. Pontus Hulten, a fellow exhibitor writes, “Movement is a spark of life that makes art human and truly realistic. An artwork endowed with never-repetitive kinetic rhythm is one of the most free; a creation, which escaping from all systems, lives on beauty alone…” Central to Soto’s approach, was the superimposition of different planes of line or geometric form on top of each other as to create a sense of separation that would produce several levels of depth on the surface of the work. The effect of these overlaid planes was the optical impression of movement or vibration as the viewer shifted their position in relation to the work of art. Within the context of Venezuela, Kinetic art was directly associated with industry, innovation, rapid urbanization, and a significant growth in the country’s middle class due to the importance of their oil economy. In fact, the art historian Marta Traba asserts that the Kinetic art movement in Venezuela from the 1960s-1970s functioned much like the Muralist movement in Mexico in the 1920s-1930s, as it was used by the government to present Venezuela through a lens that reflected the innovation and growth of the country.

Details

  • Title: Sin título (Untitled)
  • Creator: Jesús Rafael Soto
  • Date Created: 1990
  • Location: Venezuela
  • Physical Dimensions: w39.75 x h22 in
  • Type: Print
  • Rights: All rights reserved
  • Medium: serigraphy

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