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Galeria Nara Roesler
W-706, 2015
Signed on reverse
Acrylic on wood
48.8 x 43 x 1 in.


Abraham Palatnik began to develop the W series in 2004. In this body of work, the artist makes a pair of non-figurative paintings on wooden plates, which are cut into long, thin, equally wide strips with laser. He then assembles them back together, intercepting strips from both paintings, and vertically displacing them. These shifts accentuate the rhythm and dynamism of the painting’s composition –the colors create a sense of vibration, which are further emphasized by the vertical lines that trace back to the process of making.

Abraham Palatnik is an iconic figure in the optical and kinetic art movements of Brazil—a pioneer in his long-standing interest for exploring the creative possibilities embedded in crossings of art and technology. Having studied engineering, the artist became interested in investigating mechanic uses of light and movement. In 1949, he rose to prominence with the creation of his first Kinechromatic Device effectively reinventing the idea of a painting by using different voltage bulbs moving at different speeds and directions to create kaleidoscopic images. The piece was shown at the 1st Bienal de São Paulo (1951) and received an Honorable Mention from the International Jury for its originality. Abraham Palatnik subsequently initiated his work with visual progressions, coined Progressive reliefs, which he made out of various materials (such as wood, duplex cardboard and acrylic) using meticulous manual processes to create a variety of optical and kinetic effects.

His works are part of major permanent museum collections such as: Museu de Arte Moderna do Rio de Janeiro (MAM-Rio), Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium, Brussels, Belgium; Adolpho Leirner Collection of Brazilian Constructive Art, Museum of Fine Arts Houston (MFAH), Houston, USA; and Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York, USA.