MINUS SPACE’s chronology includes major events, exhibitions, and writings regarding the development of reductive art on the international level. 

To contribute information, please email MINUS SPACE.


year europe south america north america australia / asia / africa
1940 The Allianz group publishes "The Almanach Neuer Kunst in der Schweiz" bringing together reproductions of their works with those of artists such as Paul Klee, Le Corbusier and Kurt Seligmann; The publication also included texts by Bill, Leuppi, Le Corbusier, Seligmann, Siegfried Giedion and others

Christoph Freimann is born in Leipzig, Germany

Edgar Gutbub is born in Mannheim, Germany

Marcello Morandini is born in Mantova, Italy

Ettore Spalletti is born
  On April 9, Burgoyne Diller is suspended from the WPA/FAP project pending a Congressional investigation into his supposed Communist affiliations; One month later he cleared of all charges and reinstated; Diller is promoted to Assistant Technical Director of New York City's WPA At Program with responsibility for all of the visual arts divisions

Piet Mondrian relocates to New York City; The money for his trip is supplied by Harry Holtzman, who also looks after the practical aspects of Mondrian's life

Harry Holtzman moves to the US

Mel Bochner is born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Richard Kostelanetz is born in New York, New York

Robert Swain is born in Austin, Texas

Guy Goodwin is born in Alabama

Mary Heilman is born

Elizabeth Murray i born

Joan Snyder is born

Pat Steir is born

Peter Young is born

Phil Sims is born in Richmond, California
1941 Robert Delaunay dies

Hanne Darboven is born in Munich, Germany

Dieter Jung is born in Bad Wildungen, Germany

Alan Uglow is born in Luton, England

Bernar Venet is born in Château-Arnoux-Saint-Auban, France

Jan Dibbets is born in Weert, The Netherlands

Peter Willen is born in Thun, Switzerland
  The US Congress passes the Emergency Relief Appropriations Act, which specifically excludes communists from the WPA/FAP rolls

On December 7, the United States enters World War II

Carl Holty introduces Charmion von Wiegand to Piet Mondrian in New York City; von Wiegand assists Mondrian translate his writings (1941-42), resulting in Mondrian’s article, “Toward a True Vision of Reality,” which accompanied his first solo exhibition in the United States at the Valentine Dudensing Gallery (1942)

Alexander Liberman moves from France to the United States

Barry Le Va is born in Long Beach, California

Bruce Nauman is born in Fort Wayne, Indiana

Richard Tuttle is born in Rahway, New Jersey

Paul Mogensen is born in Los Angeles, California

David Novros is born in Los Angeles, California

Keith Sonnier is born in Mamou, Louisiana

Jennifer Bartlett is born in Long Beach, California

Lynda Benglis is born

Suzan Frecon is born
Tony McGillick is born in Australia

Opy Zouni is born in Cairo, Egypt
1942 The Allianz group mounts second group exhibition at the Kunsthaus in Zurich, Switzerland

John Carter is born in Middlesex, Great Britain

Helmut Dirnaichner is born in Kolbermoor, Germany

Iwan Kliun dies in Moscow, Russia
  Peggy Guggenheim opens Art of This Century Gallery, New York, New York

Piet Mondrian mounts the first substantial exhibition of his work in New York City at Valentine Dudensing Gallery

Helena Rubinstein's gallery mounts the group exhibition "Masters of Abstract Art"; Includes Burgoyne Diller, among others

Serge Chermayeff is appointed chairman of the Department of Design (the art department) at Brooklyn College; He institutes Bauhaus teaching methods; Over the next few years, he hires Harry Holtzman, Robert Wolff, Carl Holty, Ad Reinhardt, and Ilya Bolotowsky, establishing the school as a stronghold for abstraction

Manny Farber moves to New York City

Charles Biederman moves permenantly to Red Wing, Minnesota

Dan Graham is born in Urbana, Illinois

Jene Highstein is born

Lawrence Wiener is born

Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney dies on April 19 in New York, New York
1943 Marguerite Hersberger is born in Basel, Switzerland

Francisco Arana Infante is born in Vasilevka, Russia

Peter Schwarze (Blinky Palermo) is born in Leipzig, Germany; Peter and his twin brother Michael are adopted by the Heisterkamp family

Maria Nordman is born in Görlitz, Germany

Lucien den Arend is born in Dordrecht, Holland

Oscar Schlemmer dies in Baden-Baden, Germany

Otto Freundlich dies on March 9 in Lublin-Maidanek concentration camp, Poland

Sophie Taeuber-Arp dies in Zurich, Switzerland
  A. E. Gallatin's collection at the "The Museum of Living Art" at New York University, New York City, is incorporated in the Philadelphia Museum of Art

Piet Mondrian mounts the second substantial exhibition of his work in New York City; Included are the works "New York City I" and "Broadway Boogie Woogie", the last painting he completed before his death

On January 30, at the age of 37, Burgoyne Diller enlists in the US Navy; His enlistment is based on his deep-rooted sense of the artists' responsibility toward society

James Turrell is born

Fred Sandback is born

Edda Renouf is born

Howard Smith is born in Chicago, IL

Dan Christensen is born on October 6

Howardena Pindell is born

John Meyer is born

David Haxton is born in Indianapolis, Indiana
David Diao is born in China

Gretchen Albrecht is born in Auckland, New Zealand
1944 Max Bill refines the definition of Concrete Art stating, "The purpose of concretion is to make abstract thoughts accessible to the senses in reality. Concrete is here the opposite of abstract."; Bill organizes the first international exhibition of Concrete Art in Basel, Switzerland; Bill publishes the revue "Abstrakt-Konkret" in the bulletin of the Galerie des Eaux Vives, Zurich

The Allianz group mounts group exhibitions at the Galerie des Eaux Vives in Zurich, Switzerland

Wassily Kandinsky dies on December 13 in Neuilly-sur-Seine, France

Karl Martin Holzhäuser is born in Gardelegen, Germany

Karel Novosad is born in Prague, Czech Republic

Heinz-Günter Prager is born in Herne, Germany

Olivier Mosset is born in Bern, Switzerland

Frank Badur is born in Oranienburg, Germany

Rebecca Horn is borrn on March 24 in Michelstadt, Germany

Erich Dieckmann dies on November 8 in Berlin, Germany

Alma Siedhoff-Buscher dies on September 25 in Buchschlag bei Frankfurt am Main

Gustav Kluzis disappears during this year
Publication of the only issue of abstract art magazine "Arturo" in Buenos Aires; Marks the beginning of a new period for art-making in Latin America; Brought together artists and intellectuals who would form the collectives "Asociación Arte Concreto-Invención" and "Grupo Madí"

Taller Torres García (Torres García Studio) is founded in Montevideo, Uruguay, by Joaquín Torres-García; It is conceived by the artist as part of an exhaustive programme of art education initiated by him on his return to Uruguay in 1934; The group, which organizes mixed exhibitions and publishes its own official magazine, "Removedor", (1944-1963); Among its members are Torres García’s sons Augusto Torres and Horacio Torres, along with Julio Alpuy, José Gurvich, Francisco Matto, Gonzalo Fonseca and Manuel Pailós; Guided by their direct contact with Torres García, who directs them more in terms of ideas than of techniques, they are instrumental in establishing abstract art and modernism in Uruguay; As the membership included not only other artists but also sympathetic intellectuals such as the poet Esther de Cáceres, the psychiatrist Alfredo Cáceres and the writer Juan Carlos Onetti, their influence stretches beyond the visual arts to the cultural life of the country in general
Piet Mondrian dies on February 1 in New York, New York

Charmion von Wiegand dedicates herself to painting full-time

Michael Heizer is born in Berkeley, California

Mary Miss is born on May 27 in New York, New York

Allen McCollum is born

Meg Webster is born

Heidi Gluck is born in Brooklyn, New York

Ted Stamm is born in Brooklyn, New York

Harmony Hammond is born

Alan Shields is born in Kansas

Richard Wilson is born in Wichita, Kansas
1945 After World War II, Constructive art makes its appearance in Europe again

David Nash is born in Esher, England

Alf Schuler is born in Anzenbach, Germany

Sean Scully is born in Dublin, Ireland

Tomás Maldonado founds the "Asociación Arte Concreto-Invención" in Argentina subscribing to the Concrete theories of Dutch "De Stijl" artist Theo van Doesburg; Promotes a geometric, industrial aesthetic Museum of Non-Objective Painting in New York mounts a retrospective exhibition of Wassily Kandinsky

The Museum of Modern Art in New York City mounts a retrospective exhibition of Piet Mondrian

Harvard University mounts an exhibition of Burgoyne Diller and Jose de Rivera's work

John Entenza, the editor of Arts & Architecture magazine, begins the "Case Study House" program; Over the next twenty years, he commissions the design of 36 prototype homes in the Los Angeles area from architects, such as Richard Neutra, Eero Saarinen, Pierre Koenig, Craig Ellwood, and Charles & Ray Eames; The program sought to create plans for modern homes that could be quickly and inexpensively constructed using postwar industrial methods and materials; Program continues through 1966

Charles and Ray Eames design their home, Case Study House No. 8, in Pacific Palisades, CA

Barnett Newman takes up painting

Joseph Kosuth is born in Toledo, Ohio

Winston Roeth is born in Chicago, Illinois

Mary Corse is born in Berkeley, California
1946 Lucio Fontana publishes "Manifest Blanco"

Matti Kujasalo is born in Helsinki, Finland

Jean-Francois Dubreuil is born in Tours, France

Yves Popet is born in Reims, France
The "Asociación Arte Concreto-Invención's" first exhibition opens at the Salón Peuser; The "Manifiesto invencionista (Inventionist Manifesto)" is published and postulates that representative fiction was reaching its end

"Grupo Madí" is founded in Buenos Aires, Argentina; Characterized by an inventive sense of play, the group was headed by artist Carmelo Arden Quin and included artists Gyula Kosice, Martín Blaszko, Diyi Laañ, and Esteban Eitler; Grups Madí artists drew freely on a wide spectrum of European avant-garde art tendencies such as Dada and Russian Constructivism, and adhered to the theories of Concrete art, but extended its scope beyond painting and sculpture to poetry, music, theater, dance, and architecture; Theorists have debated the origin of the term “Madí" - Some suggest it emerged from "Movimiento de arte de invención" - others say it was formed from the letters "Materialismo Dialéctico (dialectic materialism)" - still others claim it was simply a fanciful term with no apparent meaning; The group’s "Manifiesto Madí" set forth conventions for abstract painting and sculpture: “Minimal and irregular frames, level as well as curved and concave surfaces. Articulated planes with linear, rotary, and transferable movements.”

Mira Schendel moves to Brazil
Betty Parsons Gallery opens in New York, NY

Naum Gabo leaves London and moves to the United States

John McLaughlin paints his first hard-edge works inspired by Zen thought

Ludwig Mies van der Rohe designs the Farnsworth House in Plano, IL

In February, the Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute in Utica, New York, mounts a retrospective exhibition of Burgoyne Diller's work; He forms an affiliation with Rose Fried's Pinacotheca gallery and mounts his first exhibition in December; In June, Diller is made permanent faculty at Brooklyn College

Laszló Moholy-Nagy dies in Chicago, Illinois; Serge Chermayeff leaves his position as chairman of the Department of Design (the art department) at Brooklyn College and assumes the directorship of the Chicago Institute of Design after Moholy-Nagy

Arthur Dove dies on November 23 in Long Island, New York

Joseph Stella dies on November 5 in New York, NY
1947 Willi Baumeister publishes "Das Unbekannte in der Kunst"

Richard Mortensen moves to Paris (1947-62) and begins working with the group of Denise René, including Auguste Herbin, Victor Vasarely, and others

Lilly Reich dies on December 14 in Berlin

Eberhard Schrammen dies on December 1 in Lübeck

Dieter Villinger is born in Bad Bergzabern, Germany
The Asociación Arte Concreto-Invención is dissolved

"Grupo Madí" divides into two groups, one led by artist Gyula Kosice, the other by artist Arden Quin and sculptor Blaszko

Museu de Arte opens in São Paulo, Brazil; Exhibits international art
In Barnett Newman's paintings, his male and female symbols evolve into circles and stripes running from top to bottom of canvas; Newman uses vertical format and vertical strip of contrasting colors as a constructive device

Agnes Martin mounts first exhibition at the Harwood Museum of Art, Taos, New Mexico

Naum Gabo moves to the United States

Sherrie Levine is born in Hazleton, Pennsylvania

Harriet Korman is born
1948 "Movimento arte concreta", an Italian art movement is founded in Milan in December by Gillo Dorfles, Gianni Monnet, Bruno Munari and Atanasio Soldati; They are inspired by the growth of Concrete Art in Switzerland and immediately attract a large following with other Italian artists, among them Galliano Mazzon, Luigi Veronesi, Mario Nigro, Mauro Reggiani, Ettore Sottsass and Amalia Garau; In Turin, Naples and Florence, other groups of Concrete artists formed that have links with the Milan group which disbands after Monnet’s death in 1958; MAC has no rigid program or manifesto; Its adherents do not discriminate rigorously between what they termed "Concrete art" and more generic abstract or geometric art

Artist Arden Quin creates an independent international "Grupo Madí" movement in Paris

Rudolf de Crignis is born in Winterthur, Switzerland

John Armleder is born in Geneva, Switzerland

Alan Charlton is born in Sheffield, England
Museu de Arte Moderna opens in São Paulo, Brazil; Exhibits international art

Museu de Arte Moderna also opens in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Exhibits international art

Taller Libre de Arte in Caracas, Venezuela, presents an exhibition of work by the Argentine group Asociación Arte Concreto-Invención, the first exhibition of abstract art in Venezuela; Simultaneously, a group of Venezuelan artists, who would later form the group "Los Disidentes," emigrated to Paris, associating themselves with the dynamic tendencies of European geometric abstraction
Barnett Newman arrives at mature style eliminating all reference to nature and spatial relationships — solid color traversed by vertical strip or "zip" of another color; Newman produces increasingly larger canvases intended to engulf the viewer in a spiritual experience

Harold Cousins moves to New York City

Charles Christopher Hill is born

Jonathan Lasker is born in Jersey City, NJ
Hiroshi Sugimoto is born in Japan
1949 Max Bill writes his essay "The Mathematical Approach in Contemporary Art" drawing attention to the significance of mathematical thinking in art (later published in Arts and Architecture in 1954); Bill revises his 1936 text regarding Concrete Art for the introduction to the catalogue of the exhibition "Zuricher Konkrete Kunst", which travels through Germany, stating: "We call Concrete Art works of art which are created according to a technique and laws which are entirely appropriate to them, without taking external support from experiential nature or from its transformation, that is to say, without the intervention of a process of abstraction. Concrete Art is autonomous in its specificity. It is the expression of the human spirit, destined for the human spirit, and should possess that clarity and that perfection which one expects from works of the human spirit. It is by means of concrete painting and scupture that those achievements which permit visual perception materialize. The instruments of this realization are color, space, light, movement. In giving form to these elements, one creates new realities. Abstract ideas which previously existed only in the mind are made visible in a concrete form. Concrete Art, when it is true to itself, is the pure expression of harmonious measure and law. It organizes systems and gives life to these arrangements, through the means of art. It is real and intellectual, anaturalist while being close to nature. It tends toward the universal and yet cultivates the unique, it rejects individuality, but for the benefit of the individual."

Jürgen Freund is born in Koblenz, Germany

Ryszard Wasko is born in Nysa, Poland

Alexandra Exter dies on March 17 in Fontenay-aux-Roses, Paris, France

Denis Pondruel is born
Lajos d'Ebneth moves to Peru

Joaquín Torres-García dies on August 8
Philip Johnson completes his landmark Glass House on his estate in New Canaan, CT

Burgoyne Diller mounts his second solo exhibition at The Pinacotheca gallery

Harold Cousins moves to Paris, France

Ross Neher is born in Kingston, New York
John Nixon is born in Sydney, Australia

Lynne Eastaway is born on January 17 in Sydney, Australia