photo: SUEMASA Mareo

Neufert Suite (Generators and Power Machines)

ArtistGuillermo KUITCA
Year1999
Material/ Techniqueoil and colored pencil on linen
Size/ DurationH195.6×W195.6cm
Copyright Notice© Guillermo Kuitca
Year of acquisition/ donation2001
DescriptionBorn in Buenos Aires, Argentina in 1961. Lives and works there.

Guillermo Kuitca started painting at the age of six and has worked in the fields of both painting and theater, finding inspiration in the work of the German choreographer Pina BAUSCH and Jorge Luis BORGES among others. Often takes as his subject matter spatial expression using beds, maps, architectural plans, theaters, and the like, winning acclaim in 1989 for an installation consisting of a number of children’s beds on which were painted maps. Kuitca blurs the boundaries between absence and presence, present and past, fiction and reality, as he seeks to grasp the intersection points where the private realm and public realm of human existence transpose, converge and separate. His work unveiled at the 2007 Venice Biennale broke fresh ground with its references to the history of modern painting.

A series of works created between 1998 and 1999, the “Neufert Suite” was inspired by "Architects’ Data (Bauentwurfslehre)", a handbook written by the German architect Ernst NEUFERT. In these works he presents various architectural plans with the structural elements such as columns and walls omitted, depicting only the objects arranged inside the buildings such as the furniture and machinery. The saturation of the single color blue and the way the images have been abstracted to an extreme combine to free the works from the division of exterior and interior and enable them to diffuse. “L’Encyclopédie” is a series based on plans included in "L’Encyclopédie" (1751-1772), edited by the French philosophers Denis DIDEROT and Jean Le Rond D’ALEMBERT. Kuitca used watercolor pencils to faithfully copy the floor plans and marble floor patterns onto primed white canvases and then applied water to make the lines bleed. He also printed floor and ceiling patterns on photo paper and then dissolved them with a solution so that the images shattered into fragments. Kuitca likens these works to “a slow-motion action painting.” By transposing these reliable objects in the form of calculated, measured, and precise plans into the realm of painting, Kuitca transforms them into objects that are whimsical, absurd, and impossible to grasp.

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