PETER SEDGLEY

SINGING LIGHT

Diehl Cube 25.01.2014 - 08.03.2014

PETER SEDGLEY

A solo exhibition of work by British artist Peter Sedgley (b. 1930). 

The artist‘s diverse oeuvre will be explored through a selection of paintings, kinetic light objects and installations created from the 1960s through to 2013. An illustrated catalogue on Sedgley‘s work will accompany the exhibition.

Educated in architecture and building, Peter Sedgley worked as an architectural assistant from 1950 until 1960 when as an autodidact he began to explore the dynamics of vision and chromatic perception in the creative arts. Sedgley along with the artist Bridget Riley were pioneers of Geometric Abstraction emerging during the 1960s, both being selected for inclusion in the prestigious “The Responsive Eye” exhibition at MOMA, New York in 1965. Sedgley received his first major solo exhibition at the influential Howard Wise Gallery in New York and the following year he was a prize winner at the 9th Tokyo International Biennale.

During the years 1968 -1970, Sedgley, together with Riley were the founding members of two charities, S.P.A.C.E. for supporting the welfare of artists with studio space and A.I.R., an Artist Index for the promotion of their work. S.P.A.C.E. became a prototype influencing the establishment of similar projects globally, in particular Künstlerhaus Bethanien in Berlin and PS1 Project in New York. Preparations for an Art Festival were scheduled to take place in 1971 called “London Now in Berlin”. The artistic director for the event, Dr. Michael Heardter, the presidential secretary of the Akademie der Künste, invited the artists in S.P.A.C.E. Studios London as a feature of the Visual Arts to be exhibited in the spacious halls of the Messedamm in Berlin Westend. This precipitated Sedgley’s first visit to Berlin as curator and co-organizer of the exhibition, also coinciding with his invitation as guest of the DAAD artist programme.

“Colours” wrote Goethe, „are acts of light.” This quotation confirmed for Sedgley his intention to render colour in composition as with musical performance. His stipend in Berlin afforded the possibilities to collaborate with other creative persons in the production of multi-media events and the opportunity arrived when commissioned by Südwestrundfunk to collaborate with a young German composer, York Höller, in the realization of a multi-media performance during the celebrated Donaueschingen Music Festival. The title of the concert was “Light-Sound / Sound-Light”, a tribute to the Russian composer and visionary, Alexander Skriabin.

With the arrival of the ‘Digital Age’, Sedgley began to explore the adeptness of computer programmers to open a new phase in the faculty of visual perception and produced a number of images he called ‘Cybergraphs’.

Museums as well as galleries took notice of his trail-blazing efforts, and Sedgley‘s work can be found in public collections including the Tate Gallery, London, The Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo NY, The Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, the Berlinische Galerie, Berlin, and the Foundation Calouste Gulbenkian, Lisbon, to name a few. Sedgley exhibited widely and has realized numerous ‘Kunst am Bau commissions in Germany.

Roger Berthold in ‘The Times’ writes in 1974: “With rather more justification, if less impact, than the late President Kennedy, Peter Sedgley could claim “Ich bin ein Berliner”.”

Accompanying the exhibition a book will be published that takes an in-depth look at  „Singing Light“ – Paintings, Kinetic Sculptures and Drawings by Peter Sedgley. 1964 – 2002 on 76 pages.

On view DIEHL: January 18th until March 15th, 2014
On view DIEHL CUBE: Januar 25th until March 8th, 2014 

German/Deutsch