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Lygia Pape

Brazilian  •  1927-2004

Biography

Lygia Pape's diverse oeuvre includes sculpture, engraving, performance and filmmaking. Along with Lygia Clark and Hélio Oiticica, Pape was a signatory of the Brazilian Neo-Concrete manifesto, which promoted the ideal that art was not a static representation but rather organic and experiential.  

Pape's oeuvre was greatly informed by the notion that art should be activated by the viewer. This tenant is best represented in the artist's 1959 Livro da Criacão (Book of Creation), in which the artist utilized geometric shapes to create 16 wood constructions, or "pages," with abstract imagery — each signifying a moment in the creation of the world. Each page is accompanied by poetic lyrics and the viewer was encouraged to touch the books and read the poetry aloud.

Insights

  • Phillips set a new world auction record for Pape in the May 2014 with the sale of her work Twelve Elements from The Night and Day Book (Book of Light) for $461,000.

"My concern is always invention. I always want to invent a new language...I want to discover new things."

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