Eva Hesse 1965 at Hauser & Wirth
Eva Hesse died in 1970, aged just 34, leaving a considerable body of work and artistic legacy.
The year 1965 was particularly fruitful for her, and this exhibition shows some of the drawings and other works with which she transformed her practice and made an indelible mark on art history.
Born in Germany, she fled her home country at the start of the war (part of the Kindertransport), and grew up in New York. A residency in 1965 brought her back to Germany for 15 months where she had a disused factory full of abandoned machinery as a studio, which evidently inspired her work.
The drawings are difficult to interpret exactly as they are abstracted details resembling enlarged maps, patterns or plans. The use of colour is almost cartoon-like and Hesse was clearly examining issues of space; an interest that was soon to flourish into the extraordinary later sculptures for which she is best known.
Although they are hard to decipher, this is partly the point – you can keep on looking at these deceptively simple drawings for a long time, enjoying piecing together the puzzle. Also on display are colourful relief works which begin to spill out of the wall. Hesse’s work is enigmatic, but you feel something inside which makes you recognise it.
Eva Hesse 1965 is at Hauser & Wirth, Savile Row from 30th January to 9th March 2013. For further information visit here.