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Anni Albers at the Alan Cristea Gallery

Anni Albers, Second Movement II, 1978, A series of 4 etchings with aquatint, 49.5 x 49.5cm each, Courtesy the artist and Alan Cristea Gallery

Exhibition preview

THE ALAN Cristea Gallery is presenting the first major retrospective of the prints of Bauhaus artist and designer Anni Albers. Entitled Prints and Studies, it will be on display from March 18 to April 17, 2010.

Prints and Studies will be the most comprehensive survey of her graphic work to date and will include nearly every print she has made, alongside studies, photographs and source material loaned from the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation.

The exhibition will be accompanied by the release of the catalogue raisonne of her prints – the first major monograph on this aspect of her work.

Albers primarily worked in textiles and, late in life, as a printmaker. At the Bauhaus, she experimented with new materials for weaving and executed richly coloured designs on paper for wall hangings and textiles in silk, cotton and linen yarns, in which the raw materials and components of structure became the source of beauty.

Like Josef, she focused above all on her work – happy to pursue it whilst remaining detached from the trends and shifting fashions of the art world. In 1984, Albers wrote, “… to comprehend art is to confide in a constant.”

Anni Albers, Orange Meander, 1970, Screenprint, 42 x 42cm, Courtesy the artist and Alan Cristea Gallery

Anni Albers (b.1899) attended the Bauhaus as a student in 1922 where she later met and married her tutor, Josef Albers. After its closure in 1933, they moved to Black Mountain College where she taught until 1949.

Her groundbreaking exhibition of textiles at the Museum of Modern Art, New York in 1949 was the first of its kind and toured from 1951 until 1953, establishing Albers as the most famous weaver of the day.

Aside from her work in textiles she was an accomplished printmaker and made her first prints in 1963 at the Tamarind Institute. From this point most of her time was devoted to the practices of lithography and screenprinting.

Her earliest prints clearly show the influence of the weavings, with the drawn line taking on a thread like quality, but as her graphic work progressed, she developed a more hard-edge geometric style often making use of layering, rotation and subtle combinations of techniques to create hypnotic and at times, optically challenging, works on paper.

The Alan Cristea Gallery will hold its first exhibition of ceramic installations by Edmund de Waal to run concurrently with their Albers exhibition.
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New paintings and works on paper by Gillian Ayres is on display at the Alan Cristea Gallery until March 13, 2010.
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Times: Monday to Friday from 10am to 5.30pm, Saturday from 11am to 2pm.

Alan Cristea Gallery, 31 & 34 Cork Street, London, W1S 3NU

Tel: 020 7439 1866