Taking a Line for a Walk
Based on Paul Klee’s pictorial thinking, the Zentrum Paul Klee is organising an exhibition on the meaning of script, sign and line in the artistic process. Writing transfers not only content but is also form. Its structure, horizontally or vertically placed lines, as well as its letters, correspond to certain norms. At the same time writing is determined by the individual, spontaneous gesture of the author. It consequently unites concept and spontaneity and is therefore interesting with regard to the artistic process. For the exhibition other important artists of the 20th century besides Klee have been selected who in their different ways take up the aspects of script, symbol and line and therefore also examine the tension between concept and spontaneity.
The exhibition examines the significance of handwriting and writing as well as «scriptive» signs in artistic practice. Departing from Paul Klee’s interest in handwriting and calligraphy, it will examine the nature of writing more closely. Writing adheres to specific rules in order to be decipherable, but is simultaneously also the expression of an individual sensibility. As handwriting unites both concept and gesture, it will serve here as a model for the artistic process. The artists selected for the exhibition not only employ writing as pictorial element, but also locate their artistic practice between the two poles of spontaneity and the conceptual. In statements about their work they have repeatedly emphasized the importance of process and movement. The spectrum spanning the gestural through to the conceptual, ranges from the gestural «scription» of Henri Michaux, Mark Tobey, and Cy Twombly, to Paul Klee, Brice Marden, and Olav Christopher Jenssen, to the conceptual painting of Jonathan Lasker and word paintings by Christopher Wool.