Hilma af Klint: The Secret Paintings
When New York's Guggenheim Museum hosted a survey of groundbreaking Swedish artist Hilma af Klint's work in 2019, it attracted 600,000 attendees – making it the most-visited exhibition in the institution's history. Now, the visionary artist's works are heading to the Art Gallery of NSW, marking the first major exhibition of af Klint's work in the Asia Pacific.
Af Klint's work was inspired by her spiritual practices – which have been closely linked to the occult. She was one of a group of five women who hosted séances and participated in "automatic writing" and "mediumistic drawing". Her monumental creations, with their dynamic colours and mysterious symbols, were unlike anything seen before. And though her works were scarcely seen until 20 years after her death in 1944, they are considered forerunners of the modernist art movement. Not only were they stylistically advanced, but af Klint believed her works communicated messages for humankind from the astral plane.
Expect works such as The Ten Largest, an extraordinary 10-piece work that explores the four stages of human development, and a host of abstract watercolours completed during the last decades of af Klint's career – several of which have never been displayed in public.