The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Monday, April 23, 2018

"Seeing the World Within: Charles Seliger in the 1940s" opens at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice
Biomorphic Series, Organic Form #4 (Serie biomorfica, forma organica #4), 1944. India ink and white tempera on paper, 11 x 14 inches (27.9 x 35.6 cm). Estate of Charles Seliger.

VENICE.- This exhibition brings to Venice and to Italy for the first time a corpus of works—thirty-three paintings and drawings—by American Surrealist painter, Charles Seliger (1926-2009), working in the 1940s, the beginning of his career, that trace his rapid development from youthful enthusiasm and talent to a mature artist, confident in his own, original artistic vision.

As an adolescent Seliger showed an precocious interest in painting and modern art. By the time he was 20 he had developed a vocabulary and syntax of his own which were to be the basis of his future career. The fantastic imagery, inventive processes and creative freedom peculiar to Surrealism enthralled him, and led him, between 1942 and 1950, the period to which the works in this exhibition belong, towards his own aesthetic maturity. Seliger’s theory and practice were profoundly indebted to Surrealist themes and to Surrealist automatism as a key to unlocking the creative impulse. Convinced of the inadequacy of normal vision to apprehend reality in its totality, he set out to paint the invisible. Seliger visualizes a natural world that is concealed from the human eye: biological structures, cells, organic viscera, and bones. In the same decade he acquired an interest, that was to endure his entire life, in the concept of metamorphosis, which was central to Surrealism. His images expresses profundity and interiority, as metaphors for the unconscious. He was if anything closer to true Surrealism than his contemporaries, many of whom were later to figure as American Abstract Expressionists. Despite his participation in the artistic climate that gave rise to Abstract Expressionism (New York in the early 1940s), Seliger developed a distinctive content, style and aesthetic of his own. Rarely has an a artist matured so fast and so successfully at such an early age: slow motion images of the micro-world that surrounds us and of which we are made. In 1945 (30 October-17 November) Peggy Guggenheim gave Seliger his first solo exhibition, in her New York gallery Art of This Century. He was just 19 years of age.

This exhibition follows the swift evolution in which Seliger boldly experimented a variety of approaches to the making of his art. Given the times in which he grew up one can but agree with John Yau who has written: “In hindsight, it seems remarkable that Seliger was never overwhelmed by the circle of brilliant older artists to which he belonged. Despite the heady artistic and literary milieu in which he moved, he was able to establish and pursue his own direction.” (Quoted from John Yau, Charles Seliger: Chaos to Complexity, New York: Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, 2003). The paintings exhibited in this exhibition constituted the fertile ground from which grew a sixty-year career, the importance and brilliance of which are still to be discovered.

“I found a wonderful phrase…which I think states the nature of my painting in a most exact way: ‘The Structure of Becoming,’ two aspects of my work, so clear to me….My paintings are always concerned with the most minute relationships and structure yet always remain in flux, in a state of becoming, never (in spite of the intensity and detail) to arrive at a final and recognizable form.” (Charles Seliger, journal entry, 1 December 1980).

The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated catalogue with texts in both English and Italian by the curator Jonathan Stuhlman and Michelle Dubois.

Today's News

June 10, 2012

Now clean, Lorenzo Ghiberti's 15th-century 'Door of Paradise' goes to Italy museum

Laguna Art Museum opens a retrospective on artist Clarence Hinkle and The Group of Eight

New Jersey-born Artist Dan Colen's first solo exhibition in Paris opens at Gagosian Gallery

First comprehensive exhibition in three decades of George Bellows' prolific career to open at National Gallery of Art

The San Diego Museum of Art presents exhibition of monumental Gothic tapestries

Chopin document selling the copyrights to two of his finest works to his English publishers up for sale

Butler Institute of American Art presents last works by master painter Joan Mitchell

"Seeing the World Within: Charles Seliger in the 1940s" opens at the Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice

Prized painting owned by high society writer, editor and painter, Fleur Cowles, for sale at Bonhams

Flip Your Field: Exhibition of Abstract art from the University of Michigan Museum of Art Collection opens

British artist Craigie Horsfield's Slow Time and the Present opens at Kunsthalle Basel

Walter Maciel Gallery opens first solo exhibition of paintings by Colin Doherty

Catalina Island Museum announces Rock n' Roll Symposium dedicated to the British Invasion

Megan Whitmarsh's rendered sculptural and painted objects on view at Jack Hanley Gallery

Institute for Contemporary Culture celebrates Beethoven's beloved piano sonatas with Luminato

Hunterdon Art Museum presents Nancy Cohen: Precarious Exchange

Artistic positions that focus on the critical analysis of violent conflicts in the media at Haus der Kunst

Haroon Mirza awarded Daiwa Foundation Art Prize 2012

Most Popular Last Seven Days

1.- Boy and an amateur archaeologist unearth legendary Danish king's trove in Germany

2.- Exhibition at The Met illustrates what visitors encountered at The palace of Versailles

3.- Philadelphia Museum of Art opens "Modern Times: American Art 1910-1950"

4.- Exhibition at Michael Hoppen Gallery presents a cross-section of works from Thomas Mailaender's career

5.- New York's Chelsea Hotel celebrity door auction raises $400,000

6.- Stevie Ray Vaughan's first guitar drives Entertainment & Music Memorabilia Auction to nearly $2.9 million

7.- Lichtenstein's Nude with Blue Hair tops $2.4 million sale of Modern & Contemporary Prints & Multiples

8.- $6.7 million Fancy Intense Blue Diamond sets auction record at Sotheby's New York

9.- Mexico court blocks sales of controversial Frida Kahlo Barbie doll

10.- Dutch museums to conduct new research on the paintings of Pieter de Hooch

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher:Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful