Elena Asins: An architect’s dream artist

Yesterday I went to the Museo Reina Sofia here in Madrid, and in ten enormous rooms on the third floor was the exhibition of Elena Asin’s work: Fragmentos de la memoria. She was born in 1940 in Madrid, and is one of the first artists in Spain to use the computer to assist her work, and somewhere along the way she studied semiotics with Noam Chomsky at Columbia. The seemingly endless walls of lines and planes reminded me a little of Sol Lewitt – The search for perfect geometric abstraction, and an investigation of mathematical principles in art.

In the artist’s statement before you enter the exhibition, she explains that she doesn’t create with the purpose of making art – she just systematically works on the problems of space that preoccupy her mind. I could see an architect walking into any of these rooms and finding endless possibilities of angles, shapes and viewpoints.

She admired the work of Piet Mondrian and in an essay in 1969 she writes “For Mondrian this space-plane is a positive void, as it is an essential condition for objective existence. Creating the void is the main action and therein lies true creation, because this void is positive; it contains the germ of the absolutely new.”

The space in-between is the most important – reminds me of meditation. Her work is a life-long methodical meditation on the structure of the plane.

Images from the Museo Reina Sofia

Published by Elizabeth Pizzuti

Design, art, and cats mostly

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