An exhibition of works by Hannelore Baron opens April 30th at Leslie Feely Gallery. In a generous offering from the estate, the exhibition includes a selection of the artist’s collages and box constructions that have not been previously exhibited. The work reflects on Hannelore Baron’s protest in her art, a protest that is topical and relevant nearly three decades since her death. In the words of the artist:
“Everything I’ve done is a statement on the, as they say, human condition...the way other people march to Washington, or set themselves on fire, or write protest letters, or go to assassinate someone. Well, I’ve had all the same feelings that these people had about various things, and my way out, because of my inability to do anything else for various reasons, has been to make the protest through my artwork.”
In Nazi Germany, on November 9, 1938, at the age of twelve Baron endured Kristallnacht (Night of Broken Glass), watching as her father was brutally beaten and their home was destroyed. These horrors haunted Baron and emerged as a driving force for her work. Baron’s work contains symbols, signs, and hidden language that evoke powerful emotion in the viewer. The abstract compositions of her collages consist of fabric, paper, and ink. The intimate scale of these works can be deceiving because of their commanding presence. Accompanying the collages are box constructions — remarkable sculptural works that can resemble buried relics.
Baron’s use of collage and found objects invites comparison to the work of Kurt Schwitters, Ann Ryan, and early Joseph Beuys. All of which used ephemera from everyday life to construct strong compositions.
Hannelore Baron will also be included in a upcoming group show at the New Museum entitled “The Keeper” [July 9 – October 9, 2016]. “The Keeper, will tell the stories of various individuals through the objects they chose to safeguard, exposing the diverse motivations that inspire to endow both great and mundane things with exceptional significance.” Hannelore Baron is included in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art. Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Whitney Museum of American Art, Art Institute of Chicago, Morgan Library, and Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
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