Adolf Luther, ‘Hohlspiegelobjekt’, 1966, von Bartha

About Adolf Luther

A self-taught painter and light sculptor, Adolf Luther sought to “represent truths lying beyond optical reality” with dark matter, glass, mirrors, lenses, and lasers. Luther experimented with Color Field painting before developing an interest in light as an autonomous medium. He began creating installations using reflective objects and lenses to capture light and movement. In Laser Space (1970), smoke renders laser beams visible, forming a continuous and variable spatial experience in which light acts as a moving element. Likewise, the exploration of materiality and its relation to light extends to works such as Light and Matter (1960), a black relief-like chalk, oil, and pigment work on hardboard. Propelled by a penchant for fusing painting, relief, and sculpture, Luther’s artistic practice included “dematerializations,” assemblages, and installations of destroyed materials that linked him with Group Zero.

German, 1912-1990, Krefeld, Germany, based in Krefeld, Germany