In the late 1950s Düsseldorf-based artists Heinz Mack and Otto Piene debuted their vision of a new aesthetic that attempted to re-harmonize the relationship between humankind and nature in the wake of the devastation of World War II. In a deliberate move away from Expressionism, they proposed starting with a clean slate to create a “new art for a new age.”
A key figure of the Paris avant-garde in the 1950s and ’60s, Jesús Soto (1923–2005) is widely recognized for his groundbreaking innovations in color theory, serial composition, and movement in art. Less well-known is the wide range of styles and mediums that he explored early on. Drawing inspiration from optics and serial music, Soto employed repeating geometric forms and superimposed surfaces to convey a sense of physical displacement.