The Berlin Drawings
One of the most influential sculptors of the 20th century, Russian-born artist Alexander Archipenko (1887–1964) played a central role in the emergence of Modernism. Although Archipenko was known primarily for his sculpture, he also executed a number of drawings, an extraordinary group of which forms the centerpiece of this exhibition.
Alexander Archipenko: The Berlin Drawings features a suite of 30 drawings created in the early 1920s—when Archipenko was living, working, and teaching in Berlin, shortly before he emigrated to the United States. The exhibition also includes three of Archipenko’s sculptures, together with photographs, works on paper, and books from other artists of that time period. All are from the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.
The drawings, which the Museum recently acquired, depict the female figure in dynamic compositions that reflect the ideologies of Cubism and Futurism, as well as Art Deco fashion plates, Baroque sculpture, and Russian icons. These works of art trace Archipenko’s evolution from a classical to modern presentation of the subject.