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Visual Music The Art of


Visual Music The Art of Edmund Kuehn July 31st - August 31st, 2020

Front Cover: Banjo Player, 1986


1.) Toreador, 1986


2) J. T.'s Holiday, circa 1977

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TABLE OF CONTENTS

Critical Excerpt by M. Melissa

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Introduction by Timothy C. Keny

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The Art of Edmund Kuehn

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Chronology

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Exhibition Checklist

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Excerpts by

“As a painter I am interested in both the seen and unseen. To express the things of the visible world I use signs in the shape of simple silhouettes or complex forms divided by light and shade. For the expression of things unseen, those that evolve before the inner eye, I invent designs that create an equivalent syntax. Thus these small works presented here are essays of and for the eye, mind and heart.� 3) Composition, 1975

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“Spontaneity and memory are key elements in my work. The immediacy and drama of accident are a part of my expression. To invoke creative freedom I use spontaneous gesture as a means of reaching beyond the predictable result.�

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5) Still Life, primary Colors, 1981

4) Banjo Player, 1986

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6) Exotic Garden Foliage, 1986

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Critical Excerpt The dialogue that most interests Kuehn is that of the Modernists, epitomized for him by the work of Picasso, Matisse, and Cezanne. Central to the work of these artists is the issue of space – or, one might say, the illusion and lack thereof. As Kuehn succinctly states, “I must always start by respecting the flatness of my surface.” Yet like the three earlier modernists, he is also aware that if his canvas is flat, his world is not – it exists in space. Painting is a two-dimensional project conceived of in a three-dimensional world. It is this inherent rift between painting and experience that creates a challenge irresistible to modernists such as Kuehn. However, there is no closure for the honest modernist – no true way to honestly resolve this dilemma. Rather, what exists for these artists is the process of balance – the ever so delicate, and elusive to all but the most tried, state of fluid harmony. As Kuehn himself has described, his work must “reflect the ironic contradictions of the creative process where the ideal and the real world are brought into delicate balance.” This is a complex balance, not only of visual elements, but also of elements such as his knowledge of the experienced world, the conditions of the medium in which he is working, and the activity of his “inner” world – his visual imagination. In expressing his respect for Cezanne, Kuehn admired that “he was a man who wanted to find the picture.” This could just as easily be said of Kuehn himself. Always pushing the limits of painting’s formal elements, each result is a new revelation of the relationship between these elements. There is a truth in these works. The truth is not in finding the answer, but in having the courage and tenacity to find the questions. For an artist so knowledgeable of the magnitude of these questions, the “irresistible challenge” is even more daunting, and the richness of Kuehn’s dialogue is a testament to an artistic life fully lived. There is yet another truth in these works. The result of Kuehn’s dialogue – the tie that binds these works – is pleasure. The pleasure of looking, and the pleasure of asking. It is offered to both the painter and the viewer. M. Melissa Wolfe, Curator of American Art, Columbus Museum of Art ‘Edmund Kuehn Retrospective’, CCAD, 2002

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7) Sailboat with Moon, 1953

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Introduction Visual Music | The Art of Edmund Kuehn includes a suite of 33 works of art in the media of ink, oil, acrylic, casein, gouache, and collage created from 1955 through 2005. The exhibition focuses on the diversity and unity within Kuehn’s abstract work over a 50 year period. His keen orchestration of line, color, form, and space combine with his unique personal sense of humor and wry visual commentary to create a vital body of work, which speaks to us today as well as it did 65 years ago. Kuehn stated that his search was "to find [in the] building blocks of design and color a cool analytic means to tame a given shape to an abundant flow of emotions and creative intent. . . . As a painter I am interested in both the seen and the unseen. To express the things of the visible world I use signs in the shape of simple silhouettes or complex forms divided by light or shade. For the expression of things unseen, those that evolve before the inner eye, I invent designs that create an equivalent syntax." In these metaphorical works, he explored a great range of symbolic possibilities which working in an abstract, or semi-abstract, manner allows an artist. Transcending specific details, his works are a sophisticated blend of diverse pictorial signs. Color is key to his works. It simultaneously creates spatial tension and evokes emotion. His energetic use of line generates a sense of movement and delineates form. Kuehn's visual poetry is aesthetically challenging and emotionally resonant long after one's initial experience of it. Timothy C. Keny

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8) Still Life, Red Table Top, 1955

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9) Flowering Plant in Clay Pot, 1990

10) Tile Reds and Blues, 1985

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11) Juan le Pins

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12) Visual Power, 1994

13) Marlboro Man, 1991

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14) Still Life, 1956

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15) Still Life With Red Peppers, 1988


16) The Acorn Squash, 1982

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17) Swallowtail Butterfly, 1982

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18) Folk Motif, 1989

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19) Metamorphosis, 1988

20) Echoes of Walter Gropius, 1986

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21) Interior with Seated Figure, 1951

22) Split Cylinder, 1982

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23) Still Life with Violets, 1989

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24) Schweik, The Good Soldier, 1992

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25) Zinnias, 1957


26) Toreador, 1986


27) Troubadour, c. 1950’s/ 1965

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28) Urban Calligraphy, 1990

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29) Still Life, 23 July 1956, 1956

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30) Derby Day, 1977

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32) The Black Spindle, 1977

31) Dominant Red, 1977


Chronology 1916 Born August 18 in Columbus, Ohio. Son of Juliana (Bojanowski) and Herman H. Kuehn 1931 Graduates from Scioto Trail School, Marion Township. Valedictorian of graduating class

1943-46

Serves in the U.S. Air Force as Artist: Educational Films, Photographic Unit, 333rd Heavy Bombardment Group, Okinawa

1947-48 Assistant Professor, Drawing and Painting, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio

1963-76 Assistant Director, Columbus Gallery of Fine Arts 1963 Organizes exhibition, Paintings from Columbus Homes

1934 Graduates from South High School, Columbus, Ohio. Editor of South High Optic. Enters Columbus Art School 1936 Works as artist a t the Owens-Illinois Glass Co. 1938 Graduates from Columbus Art School. Winner of National Competition Scholarship Award in Art

1948-62 Associate Professor, Drawing and Painting at Columbus Art School (CCAD)

1938-39 Studies under Yasuo Kuniyoshi and Vaclav Vytlacil at Art Students League in New York City

Curator Alice Schille Memorial Exhibition; Works with Marcel Duchamp in preparation of Crotti exhibition; Travels to Paris, Chartes, Loire Valley, Madrid, Barcelona, Nimes, Nice, Florence, Aix-en-Provence

1953 Marries Liese Koss of Frankfurt, Germany

1965

1939 Enters the Columbus Gallery of Fine Arts as Curator and Assistant to the Director 1941 Installs the Guernica mural by Picasso as temporary exhibit at the Columbus Gallery of Fine Arts 1941-42 Curatorial work on the Ferdinand Howald Collection at the Columbus Gallery of Fine Arts

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1964

1957-62 Curator at the Columbus Gallery of Fine Arts 1961

Travels to Paris, Bern, Frankfurt, Wiesbaden, Brussels, Bruges, Rotterdam, Amsterdam, London

1962 Travels to Geneva, Nice, Pisa, Rome, Florence, Venice, Innsbruck, Vaduz, Zurich

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Organizes Jean Crotti in Retrospect; Travels in England, France, Switzerland; Travels to London, Paris, Grindelwald; Arranges Mary Johnston Collection exhibition

1966 Travels to Frankfurt, Paris, Nice, St. Paul-de-Vance, Arles 1967

Organizes The Gordian Knot: 19th and 20th Century Paintings and Sculpture; Travels to Paris, London, Etretat; Inquiry regarding Maillol sculpture for Columbus


1968 Arranges David Blythe exhibition; Organizes Hanley Collection exhibition 1969 Travels to Paris, Strasbourg, Colmar, Freiburg, Biengen 1970

Conceives and executes Emerson Burkhart Retrospective exhibition

1971 Travels to Athens, Mykonos, Bodrum, Rhodes, Santorini, Crete 1972 Travels to Frankfurt, Biengen, Bern, Geneva, Annecy, Aix-lesBains, Belley, Montelimar, Nice, Antibes, Cluny, Autun, Bourges, Versailles, Paris 1973 Organizes Robert Chadeayne Retrospective

1979

Travels to Paris, Antibes, Nice, Beaulieu-sur-Mer, Juan-les-Pins Early

1980’s Serves on the Capital Square Commission; Advisor to St. Mary’s Church renovation 1981 Art of Edmund Kuehn exhibition at The Battelle Memorial Institute, 1982 Exhibition of still lifes at Keny and Johnson Gallery, Columbus, Ohio; Travels to Paris and Giver1982-83 Many Modes of Edmund Kuehn at Keny and Johnson Gallery, Columbus, Ohio; commences annual one-person exhibitions at Keny 1983 Travels to England

1975 Travels to Nice, Monaco, Monte Carlo, Beaulieu-sur-Mer, Cap Ferrat, San Remo

1984 Juries the Ohio State Fair Fine Arts Exhibition amateur secti-

1976 Installs Henry Moore’s Oval with Points in Columbus

1986 Juries exhibition of works by High School Teachers of Art, Columbus

1978 Exhibition of works by Edmund Kuehn at the Heritage Gallery, Columbus; Travels to Amsterdam, Paris, Vaux-le-Vicomte, Versailles

1996 One-person exhibition: Edmund Kuehn: The Abstractions, Springfield Museum of

2000

Ohio Wesleyan University, The Lynn Mayhew Gallery, Delaware, Ohio, Color in Common: An Exhibition of Paintings by Eleven Central Ohio Artists, February 16-March 10, 2000.

Receives the Columbus College of Art and Design Joseph V. Canzani Award for Alumni Excellence 2001 One-person exhibition: Edmund Kuehn: A Retropsective (1937-2001), Columbus College of Art and Design, Canzani Center 2005 One-person exhibition: Edmund Kuehn: The Fifties, Capital University, Schumacher Gallery 2006

Edmund Kuehn: A 90th Birthday Celebration, The Columbus Museum of Art, Ohio

2011 Died on June 12 in Columbus, Ohio 2015

One-person exhibition: Edmund Kuehn: A Retrospective, February 24 – April 5, 2015, The Ross Art Museum, Ohio Wesleyan University.

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Exhibition Checklist 1.) TOREADOR 1986 | Acrylic | 10 x 8 in. 2) J. T.'S HOLIDAY c. 1977 | Mixed media collage | 6 1/2 x 7 1/4 in. 3) COMPOSITION 1975 | Collage | 6 1/8 x 4 1/4 inches 4) BANJO PLAYER 1986 | Gouache collage | 10 x 8 in. 5) STILL LIFE, PRIMARY COLORS 1981 | Ink and gouache | 4 x 6 in. 6) EXOTIC GARDEN FOLIAGE 1986 | Acrylic | 10 x 8 in. 7) SAILBOAT WITH MOON 1953 | Crayon | 8 x 13 in. 8) STILL LIFE, RED TABLE TOP 1955 | Acrylic on board | 15 x 20 in. 9) FLOWERING PLANT IN CLAY POT 1990 | Acrylic on paper | 15 x 20 in. 10) TILE REDS AND BLUES 1985 | Acrylic | 10 x 8 in.

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11) JUAN LE PINS Gouache | 8 x 10 in. 12) VISUAL POWER 1994 | Acrylic | 6 1/4 x 10 in. 13) MARLBORO MAN 1991 | Ink | 8 x 10 in. 14) STILL LIFE 1956 | Casein on paper | 15 x 20 in. 15) STILL LIFE WITH RED PEPPERS 1988 | Acrylic on paper | 15 x 20 in. 16) THE ACORN SQUASH 1982 | Oil on paper board | 22 1/2 x 28 1/2”

17) SWALLOWTAIL BUTTERFLY 1982 | Ink and collage | 5 x 8 in. 18) FOLK MOTIF 1989 | Acrylic | 8 x 10 in. 19) METAMORPHOSIS 1988 | Acrylic | 8 x 10 in. 20) ECHOES OF WALTER GROPIUS 1986 | Acrylic | 8 x 10 in. 21) INTERIOR WITH SEATED FIGURE 1951 | Oil on paper | 11 1/2 x 13 in. 22) SPLIT CYLINDER 1982 | Ink, crayon, pencil | 5 x 8 in. 23) STILL LIFE WITH VIOLETS 1989 | Acrylic | 15 x 20 in.

24) SCHWEIK, THE GOOD SOLDIER 1992 | Acrylic | 8 x 10 in.

25) ZINNIAS 1957 | Acrylic on board | 16 x 12 in. 26) TOREADOR 1986 | Acrylic | 10 x 8 in. 27) TROUBADOUR c. 1950’s/1965 | Acrylic | 20 1/2 x 14 1/2 in.

28) URBAN CALLIGRAPHY 1990 | Gouache | 10 x 8 in 29) STILL LIFE, 23 JULY 1956 1956 | Acrylic | 15 x 20 in. 30) DERBY DAY 1977 | Collage | 6 x 8 in. 31) DOMINANT RED 1977 | Collage | 4 3/4 x 7 3/4 in. 32) THE BLACK SPINDLE 1977 | Collage | 4 1/2 x 9 1/4 in. 33) TWO PHILOSOPHERS 2005 | Acrylic | 8 x 10 in. 34) DRAPED SYMBOLS 1982 | Ink and collage | 5 x 8 in.


33) Two Philosophers, 2005

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34) Draped Symbols, 1982

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Visual Music | The Art of Edmund Kuehn  

Visual Music | The Art of Edmund Kuehn includes a suite of 33 works of art in the media of ink, oil, acrylic, casein, gouache, and collage c...

Visual Music | The Art of Edmund Kuehn  

Visual Music | The Art of Edmund Kuehn includes a suite of 33 works of art in the media of ink, oil, acrylic, casein, gouache, and collage c...

Profile for timkeny