Past Exhibition

Oskar Fischinger: Motion Paintings

Curated by Peter Frank

March 11 — May 28, 2005

This Fischinger survey at Jack Rutberg Fine Arts is curated by art critic Peter Frank, who has also collaborated on the educational component of “Visual Music.” According to Peter Frank, “we now understand Oskar Fischinger not only as a link between the geometric painting of pre-war Europe and post-war California but as a grandfather of the digital arts.”

Oskar Fischinger’s earliest drawings and paintings were first created as sequential components in his films to evoke various states of consciousness, often using music as a springboard to syncopate lines, forms and color. His work also reflects his interest in spirituality, especially Buddhism and Theosophy. Fischinger’s influence on the development of avant-garde abstract films is profound, with the genius of his vision acknowledged by twentieth century luminaries such as Orson Welles, Wassily Kandinsky, Moholy Nagy, Lyonel Feininger, Leopold Stokowski and John Cage.

Fischinger’s artistic innovations in film, recognized in Hollywood where he moved to work in 1936, eventually evolved exclusively into painting. In that medium he distilled his ideas in non-objective abstraction, presaging and significantly influencing Los Angeles’ contemporary hard-edge abstract painters, most notably John McLaughlin.