PAINTING INTO SPACE
Beginning Monday December 4, 2023, and on view through March 17, 2024, The Bass Museum of Art presents Etel Adnan: Painting into Space, featuring the premiere of a monumental wall mural set alongside additional works by the Lebanese-born artist. This exhibition will focus on the intersections of painting and architecture that informed Adnan’s career.
A writer, poet and visual artist, Etel Adnan (b. 1925, Beirut, Lebanon; d. 2021, Paris, France) built a practice inspired by her cross-cultural experiences and lifelong engagement with the natural world. Adnan created rich, geometric fields of color in her paintings and drawings, with some compositions occasionally translated into large-scale wall murals. The artist originally wanted to study design before turning her attention to canvas and paper, once stating, “Architecture contains everything: form, color, social concerns.” Adnan recognized a mural’s inherent connection to the built environment, a direct means of injecting art into public space.
Painting into Space presents a selection of work by Adnan centered around The Bass’ recent acquisition of Untitled (2023), a monumental ceramic wall mural based on a sketch completed by the artist in 2020. The exhibition focuses on the interplay of geometric forms—circles, squares, and triangles—redolent in her paintings and underlying the artist’s interests in the spatial environment.