Section C Light Spaces

At the end of the 1950s, artists in Germany, France, Italy and also to some extent in Argentina, Brazil, Yugoslavia and Switzerland, developed Light art into a spatial experience and created object-like and spatial situations that also dealt with perception. For the first time, works demanded participation rather than contemplation, and they were also the first to implement virtuality. Therefore, with the artists' consent, ZKM commissioned the reconstruction of three important light spaces from 1966 by Gruppo T [Gabriele De Vecchi, Davide Boriani, Giovanni Anceschi, and Gianni Colombo] from Italy. Like several of the other objects and installations, they are on exhibit for the first time in 40 years. Gruppo T ["T" for tempo, time in Italian] created walk-in light spaces linked to the behavior of those who entered. The perception of these spaces depends on programming and randomness. Working at the same time and with similar themes were Otto Piene, Heinz Mack and Günther Uecker, who comprised the core of the artists group ZERO from 1957 to 1966. The works by ZERO and Adolf Luther show objects distributed throughout a space. The objects glow or are lit up, thereby "dissolving" their materiality. Sculptural objects project moving light patterns in the space, surrounding the beholder with light and shadow formations. Light boxes and sculptures by Grazia Varisco, Erich Buchholz, and Imi Giese were forerunners in establishing future positions. The ZERO installations make full use of the tension between concrete sculptures and immaterial light projections. In the 1960s, artists in France such as Nicolas Schöffer, Jean Tinguely and François Morellet also worked in the area of new experiences in perception. James Turrell turned art into true perception-training: "I hope that one is able to see his or her own seeing, and that this act of self reflexivity, the 'seeing-oneself-see,' says more about the seeing of the beholder."