The rediscovery of the work that Hilma af Klint (1862–1944) began in 1906—an amalgam of abstraction, surrealism, and figuration—has necessitated a rewriting of the history of abstract art in the West, displacing Wassily Kandinsky as the self-appointed originator of the genre.
Af Klint, a well-educated member of Sweden’s aristocracy, was an adherent to spiritualism, theosophy, and anthroposophy. Coinciding with the scientific revelations of the early twentieth century—radiation, theories of relativity and quantum physics, the discovery of electromagnetic waves—her revolutionary art gave form to the invisible.
Thirty-five years after af Klint’s inclusion in the 1986 LACMA exhibition The Spiritual in Art: Abstract Painting 1890–1985—and seven years after the landmark Moderna Museet retrospective Hilma af Klint: A Pioneer of Abstraction rocked the art world—Halina Dryschka’s essential documentary BEYOND THE VISIBLE—HILMA AF KLINT is here to stream.
Participants include Moderna Museet director and curator Iris Müller Westermann, af Klint biographer Julia Voss, Swedish art historians Anna Maria Bernitz and Eva-Lena Bengtsson, and family members Ulla, Johan, and Elisabet af Klint.
Here was a woman who consequently followed her own path in life that led to a unique oeuvre. A strong character and, despite all restrictions, Hilma af Klint explored the possibilities that go beyond the visible. She knew that she was doing something important not only for herself but for many people. It is more than time to tell the untold heroine stories. And there are many of them. This is one.
This is a film about a truly successful life. A woman who was not dependent of the opinion of others and kept on going her very unique way of living and working. Dedicated to things that matter in everybody’s life: How do we want to live? How do we achieve a truly content and fulfilled life? And is that what we see real or do we just think it is real?
Hilma af Klint’s oeuvre goes even beyond art because she was looking for the whole picture of life. And with that she comes close to the one question: What are we doing here? — Halina Dryschka
See link below for streaming details.
Hilma af Klint, from top: Group IV, No. 3, The Ten Largest, Youth, 1907; The Swan,No. 17, group IX, SUW/UW Series, 1915; No. 113, group III, The Parsifal Series, 1916; Group I, No. 7, Primordial Chaos, 1906–07; Group IV, No. 7, Adulthood, 1907; No. 3, The Teachings of Buddhism, 1920; No. 2a, The Current Standpoint of the Mahatmas, 1920; Beyond the Visible: Hilma af Klint poster, Zeitgeist Films; Hilma af Klint in Sweden; Tree ofKnowledge, No. 5, 1915; Group X, No. 1, Altarpiece, 1915. Artwork photographs by Albin Dahlström, Moderna Museet, Stockholm, courtesy and © the Hilda afKlint Foundation, Stockholm, the photographer, and Moderna Museet.