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
         
1950 "Los Disidentes" form as a group in Paris in 1950; During the 1940s, a group of young Venezuelan artists rejected the traditional education offered by Caracas’ art schools and went abroad in search of fresh ideas and new opportunities. "Los Disidentes" reject the landscape painting and Nativist styles that are then popular in Venezuela and become devotees of geometric abstraction; The expatriate Venezuelans present themselves as an avant-garde collective, in synch with the latest developments in the international art world. The group includes artists Alejandro Otero, Mateo Manaure, Narciso Debourg, Pascual Navarro, Perán Erminy, Carlos González Bogen, Aimée Battistini, Armando Barrios, Luis Guevara Moreno, Dora Hersen, Rubén Núñez, dancer Belén Núñez, and philosopher J.M. Guillent Pérez; They are later joined by César Enríquez, Alirio Oramas, Oswaldo Vigas, Genaro Moreno, Omar Carreño, Miguel Arroyo, Régulo Pérez and Luis E. Chávez; The artists begin publishing a controversial journal, also called "Los Disidentes"; The work of Los Disidentes begin to forge a new path for art in their native Venezuela, where artists and intellectuals seek to create a cosmopolitan culture

Carlos Cruz-Diez, Jesús Rafael Soto, and other Venezuelan artists living in Paris in the 1950s contribute significantly to the development of kinetic art; Building on a foundation of geometric abstraction and influenced by the work of Dutch painter Piet Mondrian, kinetic artists develop abstract works with kinetic and optical effects, forging a direct relationship between technology and art; Kinetic art is not a purely visual form but rather a perceptive one that involves tactile and auditory, as well as visual, experience; Kinetic work requires spectators to actively participate in an art experience; the introduction of viewer movement into a work of art is one of Kinetic art’s most valuable achievements; Cruz-Diez carries out an exhaustive investigation of color, leading him to optical illusions in which colors that are not physically present in the work are perceived by the eye; Soto experiments with light and movement with the goal of creating a state of “pure vibration” in works that could be passed in front of or walked through

Victor Vasarely becomes interested in the effects of visual vibrations

Wolfgang Laib is born

Gerhard Mantz is born in Neu-Ulm, Germany
Swiss Concrete artist Max Bill's exhibition at the Museu de Arte in São Paulo, Brazil; Contributes greatly to the development of Brazilian Concrete abstraction

Concrete Art movement begins in Brazil; Grounded in the theories of the Bauhaus, Concrete artists work with the rigid formulas of mathematical equations and the pragmatic logic of architecture

After 1950, geometric and constructive art – particularly optical and Kinetic art – takes off in Venezuela; Among the Venezuelan artists  working in geometric abstraction are Alejandro Otero, Jesús Rafael Soto, Omar Carreño, Mateo Manaure, Carlos Cruz-Diez, Carlos González Bogen, Ramón Vásquez Brito, Pascual Navarro, Luis Guevara Moreno, Víctor Valera, Elsa Gramcko, Oswaldo Vigas, and Gego

Lygia Clark travels to Paris to study painting; Studies with Fernand Leger

Jesús Rafael Soto relocates to Paris, France
Josef Albers begins teaching at Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut (through 1960); Begins "Homage to the Square" series, which he will focus on through 1976

Barnett Newman mounts first solo exhibition in New York

Richard Bottwin is born in Jersey City, New Jersey
 
         
1951 Max Bill helps found and teaches at the Hochschule für Gestaltung in Ulm, Germany (1951-1956)

Ralph Eck is born in Unterpörlitz bei Limenau, Germany

David Thomas is born on August 22 in Belfast, North Ireland

Katarzyna Kobro dies in Poland
Swiss Concrete artist Max Bill wins the sculpture prize at the first São Paulo Bienal, Brazil Andrew Ritchie organizes the exhibition "Abstract Painting and Sculpture in America" at the Museum of Modern Art, New York

Burgoyne Diller mounts his third solo exhibition at Rose Fried Gallery (formerly The Pinacotheca)

Robert Rauschenberg begins painting his "White Paintings"

Charmion von Wiegand becomes President of American Abstract Artists (1951-53)

Dorothea Rockburne studies at Black Mountain College, Asheville, North Carolina (thru 1955)

Tibor de Nagy Gallery opens in New York, New York

Craig Ellwood designs and builds Case Study House, No. 16, in Los Angeles, CA
Stephen Bambury is born in Christchurch, New Zealand
         
1952 Wladyslaw Strzemenski dies on December 26 in Lodz, Poland

Gerald Rockenschaub is born in Linz, Austria

Elmer is born in Copenhagen, Denmark

Renaud Jacquier-Stajnowicz is born in France
Concrete art collective "Grupo Frente" is founded by abstract artist Ivan Serpa in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; The group’s members included the brothers César and Hélio Oiticica, Décio Vieira, Aluísio Carvão, João José da Costa, and Lygia Pape; Grupo Frente is interested in representing organic forms in their work while remaining within the nonfigurative, geometric conventions of Concrete art

"Grupo Ruptura" was founded by artists Waldemar Cordeiro, Luís Sacilotto, Lothar Charoux, Geraldo de Barros, Kazmer Féjer, Leopold Haar, and Anatol Wladislaw in São Paulo, Brazil; They were followers of the theoretical principles of international Concrete art - based on theories elaborated by the Dutch artist Theo van Doesburg in 1930 and taken up after his death by the Swiss artist Max Bill; "Grupo Ruptura" promoted objectivity, seeking to exclude representation and eliminate any trace of subjectivity in works of art; Form was the essential element of any painting, color was subordinate
Robert Rauschenberg, Merce Cunningham, and John Cage collaborate at Black Mountain College, North Carolina

John Cage's 4'33" is performed by David Tudor in Woodstock, New York

Tanager Gallery and Hansa Gallery open in New York, New York starting the run of 10th Street artist-run cooperatives

John McLaughlin mounts first solo exhibition at Felix Landau Gallery in Los Angeles, California

Don Voisine is born in Fort Kent, Maine

Alan Ebnother is born in Alameda, California

Russell Maltz is born in Brooklyn, New York
 
         
1953 The first issue of "spirale" is published, a review founded by Marcel Wyss, Dieter Roth, and Eugen Gomringer in Bern, Switzerland; Published until 1963

Antoine Perrot is born in Toulon, France
Swiss Concrete artist Max Bill returns to Brazil to lecture

"Grupo Frente’s" first exhibition presented at the Instituto Cultural Brasil-Estados Unidos (Brazil-United States Cultural Institute) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

The first national Brazilian exhibition of abstract art is held in Petropolis, Brazil
Martha Jackson Gallery opens in New York, New York

Morgan Russell dies on May 29 in Broomall, Pennsylvania

Peter Halley is born on September 26 in New York, New York

Stephen Westfall is born in Schenectady, New York

Joan Waltemath is born in Nebraska

Beauford Delaney leaves New York for Europe, settling in Paris
 
         
1954 Max Bill's essay "The Mathematical Approach in Contemporary Art" drawing attention to the significance of mathematical thinking in art is published in Arts and Architecture

Friedrich Vordemberge-Gildewart moves to Ulm, Germany

Rolf Eisenberg is born in Sigmaringen, Germany

Willi Otremba is born in Bochum, Germany

Hans Luckhardt dies on October 8 in Berlin, Germany

Franz Singer dies on October 5 in Berlin, Germany

Nikolaj Michajlovich Suetin dies in Leningrad, Russia

Thomas Kalthoff is born in Essen, Germany
Daniel Feingold is born in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil Ralph Humphrey begins making monochrome paintings

Agnes Martin begins making her first semi-abstract work in Taos, New Mexico; Betty Parsons sees her work, buys 5 paintings from her, and invites her to join her gallery; Parsons stipulates that Martin move to New York City

Ludwig Mies van der Rohe designs the Seagram Building in New York, NY

Ellsworth Kelly returns to New York from Paris

The Whitney Museum of American Art moves to West 54th Street in New York City

Robert Gober is born

Jill Baroff is born in Summit, New Jersey

Carmen Herrera moves permanently to New York, NY
 
         
1955 Vasarely, Yaacov Agam, Jean Tinguely, Pol Bury, Jesús Rafael Soto, and others are included in the exhibition "Le Mouvement" at the Galerie Denise René in Paris that launched the Kinetic Art movment

Václav Fiala is born in Klatovy, Czech Republic

Uwe Kubiak is born in Aachen, Germany

Beat Zoderer is born in Zurich, Switzerland

Willi Baumeister dies on August 31 in Stuttgart, Germany

Fernand Léger dies on August 17 in Gif-sur-Yvette, Seine-et-Oise

Ruth Campau is born on th island of Mors, Denmark
Grupo Frente's second exhibition at Museu de Arte Moderna, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Lygia Clark works on a house project with architect Oscar Niemeyer, Belo Horizonte, Brazil
David Diao relocates from China to the United States

Roni Horn is born

Philip Taaffe is born in Elizabeth, New Jersey

Michael Rouillard is born in Valparaiso, Florida
 
         
1956 Alexander Rodchenko dies in Moscow, Russia

Josef Hartwig dies on November 13 in Frankfurt, Germany

Edgar Hecht dies in Tel Aviv, Israel

Iwan Puni (Jean Pougny) dies in Paris, France

Rudolf Stingel is born in Merano, Italy
Helio Oiticica develops work along abstract and concrete lines in gouache on paper

The first national exhibition of Concrete art opens in São Paulo and travels to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; During the exhibition, São Paulo's geometric artist group, "Grupo Ruptura", attacked the members of "Grupo Frente", accusing them of lacking structural rigor in their works and permitting lyrical expression; "Grupo Frente" breaks up
John Cage begins teaching at the New York School for Social Research (through 1960); His class influences future Fluxus artists

Pierre Koenig designs and builds the Bailey House, Case Study House No. 21, in Los Angeles, CA

John and Nicholas Krushenick found Brata Gallery on 10th Street in New York, NY; Al Held and George Sugarman are among the first exhibiting artists

Ralph Humphrey moves to New York City

Warren Isensee is born in Asheville, North Carolina

Gilbert Hsiao is born in Pennsylvania; Raised in Terre Haute, Indiana
The exhibition "Direction 1", held at the Macquarie Galleries, Sydney, Australia, broadens interest in abstract art

Andrew Leslie is born in Australia
         
1957 The book "Kalte Kunst?: zum Standort der heutigen Malerei" by Karl Gerstner is published

Frantisek Kupka dies on Juen 21 in Puteaux, Paris France

Wyndham Lewis dies on March 7 in London, England

Günter Wolf is born in Kreuznach, Germany

Karin Sander is born

Ernst Louis Beck dies on June 19 in Ebingen, Württemberg

Tumi Magnusson is born in Reykjavik, Iceland
Helio Oiticica begins production of "Metaesquemas"; Participates in the exhibition "Modern Art in Brazil" at the Museo Nacional de Buenos Aires, Argentina

Brazilian Concrete group's second collective exhibition in Rio de Janeiro; Group begins to fracture along geographical lines; São Paulo artists, known as "Grupo Ruptura", focus on the pure visual experience of form, excluding any symbolic references in their paintings

Gego makes first sculpture encouraged by Alejandro Otero and Jesus Rafael Soto; Participates in the exhibition "Arte Abstracto en Venezuela", along with Otero, Soto, and Cruz-Diez

Mathias Goeritz and Luis Barragan collaborate on the Towers of Satellite City in Mexico City, Mexico

Lygia Clark studies the work of Josef and Anni Albers
Black Mountain College in North Carolina is closed due to lack of funds

Agnes Martin moves to New York City; She locates to Coenties Slip near Wall Street; Neighbors included Ellsworth Kelly, Lenore Tawney, Jack Youngerman, and Robert Indiana; Barnett Newman had a studio nearby

Leo Castelli and Ileana Sonnabend (later marrried name) found Leo Castelli Gallery in their living room in New York, New York

The Metropolitan Museum of Art buys Jackson Pollock's painting "Autumn Rhythm" for $30,000, stunning the art world

Donald Judd mounts first solo exhibition at Panoras Gallery in New York

Felix Gonzalez-Torres is born
Billy Gruner is born on September 11 in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Christopher Snee is born in Melbourne, Australia
         
1958 "Movimento arte concreta", an Italian art movement founded in Milan in December 1948, disbands after the death of its founder Gianni Monnet

The first issue of "structure" is published, an annual on new art, edited by J. Baljeu; Published until 1964

Giacomo Balla dies on March 1 in Rome, Italy

Jean Crotti dies on January 30 in Paris, France

Bart van der Leck dies on November 13 in Blaricum, The Netherlands

Martin Willing is born in Bocholt, Germany

Maik Löbbert is born in Gelsenkirchen, Germany

Heimo Zobernig is born in Mauthen, Austria
Gego begins working with volumes, using aluminum and steel geometric planes

Lygia Clark exhibits with Lothar Charoux and Franz Weissmann at the Galeria de Arte das Folhas
Josef Albers retires as Chair of Department of Design at Yale University; Remains a visiting professor until 1960

The Whitney Museum of American Art and Museum of Modern Art acquires works by Burgoyne Diller; He begins working with Galerie Chalette; His first solo exhibition is mounted in May 1961

Jasper Johns mounts first solo exhibition a Leo Castelli Gallery, New York, New York

Yayoi Kusama moves from Japan to New York City

Joe Overstreet moves to New York City

Kevin Finklea is born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Marcie Miller Gross is born in Kansas City, Kansas

Steven Parrino is born in New York, New York
David Thomas arrives in Australia

Jurek Wybraniec  is born in Perth, Australia
         
1959 Tilman is born in Munich, Germany

Daniel Göttin is born in Basel, Switzerland

Michael Mork is born in Herning, Denmark
Brazilian poet Ferreira Gullar publishes the "Manifesto neoconcreto" marking the emergence of the Neo-Concrete movement and the end of collaboration between the Brazilian Concrete artists from Rio de Janeiro, Grupo Ruptura, and São Paulo, "Grupo Frente"; The schism widens during the first exhibition of Neo-Concrete art at the Museu de Arte Moderna in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Neo-Concrete art, a reaction against the rationalism of art, espoused a creative freedom that linked it closer to the ideals of "Grupo Frente"; Founding members included Lygia Clark, Amílcar de Castro, Franz Weissmann,and Lygia Pape; Hélio Oiticica, Aluísio Carvão, Willys de Castro, and Hércules Barsotti joined shortly thereafter

"Grupo Ruptura" disbanded in São Paulo, Brazil

Carlos Cruz-Diez makes a short film about Gego's sculptures entitled, "Movement and Vibration in Space: A Sculpture by Gego", edited at Iowa State University; Gego travels to USA for one year, lives in Iowa; Makes sculpture Esfera (Sphere)

Helio Oiticica experiments on the transition from canvas to three-dimensional space; Begins to develop his "Inventions" also called "Monochromatics"; Works on the "White Paintings, Bilateral and Spatial Reliefs"; Classifies his work as non-objects (following Ferreira Gullar's Theory of the Non-Object)

Lygia Clark participates in exhibition Brasilianischer Kunstler at the Haus der Kunst, Munich, Germany
"Sixteen Americans" exhibition at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, New York; Curated by Dorothy Miller; The 23-year-old Frank Stella exhibits four of his "Black Paintings"

"Four Abstract Classicists" exhibition at the San Francisco Museum of Art, includes artists John McLaughlin, Lorser Feitelson, Karl Benjamin and Frederick Hammersley, curated by Jules Langsner; Travels to Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Institute of Contemporary Art in London, and Queens University in Belfast

Donald Judd begins writing for Arts Magazine

Carl Andre begins making repetitive-shaped sculptures

Frank Stella declares himself an opponent of "relational" painting

Robert Ryman begins making monochrome white canvases

Allan Kaprow stages "18 Happenings in 6 Parts" in New York, New York

The Museum of Non-Objective Painting is renamed the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and opens its first permanent home on 5th Avenue in New York, New York; Building is designed by architect Frank Lloyd Wright

Al Held mounts first solo exhibition at Poindexter Gallery in New York, New York

Daniel Levine is born in New York, NY
Rose Nolan is born in Melbourne, Australia

Vicente Butron is born in Manila, The Philippines

 

PREVIOUS DECADE  |  NEXT DECADE >