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Unlock the World of Abstraction: Kandinsky at the Art Gallery of New South Wales.

We harbour a deep appreciation for the oeuvre of Kandinsky as he possessed a remarkable gift known as synesthesia, a captivating neurological phenomenon where the senses intertwine. In his extraordinary case, the realms of hearing and sight converged, weaving an intricate tapestry where sounds and colors danced harmoniously in his vivid imagination.

Needless to say, we got very excited when Sydney unveiled an exclusive and awe-inspiring exhibition at the Art Gallery of New South Wales – Kandinsky. As part of the blockbuster Sydney International Art Series 2023–24, this exhibition will take you on a journey through the transcendent world of European abstraction as seen through the eyes of Vasily Kandinsky (1866-1944), one of the greatest innovators in the field. This event marks the most extensive showcase of Kandinsky's work ever witnessed in Australia.

Kandinsky has been meticulously curated in partnership with the renowned Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York, which houses one of the world's most significant Kandinsky collections. Leading this artistic endeavor is Megan Fontanella, the curator of modern art and provenance at the Guggenheim Museum, alongside Jackie Dunn, senior curator of exhibitions at the Art Gallery of New South Wales.

Kandinsky's art was driven by a profound desire to elevate humanity and a resolute belief in art's transformative power for both the individual and society. His story, one of unwavering hope and resilience, continues to resonate even a century later.

Over 50 remarkable pieces grace this exhibition, showcasing some of Kandinsky's most iconic works. Among them are the early career masterpiece "Blue Mountain" (1908–09), "Dominant Curve" (1936), and the monumental "Composition 8" (1923), which Kandinsky himself considered the zenith of his artistic achievement. Notably, many of the works on display will be making their Australian debut.

Within the exhibition, an immersive, family-friendly artist project by the British-Indian-Australian artist Desmond Lazaro awaits. Drawing inspiration from the sacred geometries that fascinated Kandinsky, "Point and Line to Plane" encourages visitors to explore a colorful labyrinth and create drawings using the same shapes – circles, triangles, and squares – that fueled Kandinsky's artistic imagination.

Accompanying the Kandinsky exhibition is a presentation of 'spirit drawings' by British medium Georgiana Houghton from the 1860s and 70s, on display until March 10, 2024. Titled "Invisible Friends," this exhibition unveils Houghton's lesser-known and rarely seen works in Sydney, shedding light on the pivotal role that spiritualism played in the early days of modernism.

The Art Gallery extends an invitation to visitors to delve deeper into the realm of abstraction with a variety of related public programs, including talks, tours, and workshops. To discover more about these programs and to explore the full spectrum of artistry on display, visit the Art Gallery website.

Embrace the transcendent power of abstraction this summer with Kandinsky at the Art Gallery of New South Wales. It's an exhibition that promises to be nothing short of extraordinary.


Words by AW.

Photos courtest of AGNSW.


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