Gerd Leufert - Latin America New York Monday, May 23, 2016 | Phillips
  • Provenance

    Acquired directly from the artist by the present owner

  • Catalogue Essay

    Gerd Leufert was born in Memel, a Lithuanian town occupied by Germany during WWI. He studied graphic design in Munich and became a member of the renowned and innovative Werkbun, an association of design and craftsmanship that initiated collaborations between artists, architects, craftsmen and manufacturers. After fighting in WWII, Leufert worked for numerous reputable publishing houses in Germany, and in 1951 he immigrated to Venezuela where he not only triumphed as a graphic designer, but also made important contributions in design and museology. In 1952, he began a close relationship with another European émigré, Gertrude Goldschmidt, better known in the art world as Gego. Leufert went on to work at the Museo de Bellas Artes de Caracas for over a decade and during his tenure he rebranded the museum’s visual identity, curating many innovative exhibitions and designing over two hundred award-winning exhibition catalogues.

    His contributions as an artist were equally significant and influential in his adopted homeland, Venezuela. Influenced by international movements of abstraction, constructivism and informalism, Leufert produced a substantial body of work consisting of monotypes, lose organic drawings and painting, all of which were a departure from his graphic art. The present lot is a captivating painting imbued with intrinsic linear patterns. On the one hand, the patterns are reminiscent of the artist’s background in graphic design. On the other hand, they allude to the pure abstractions of his Venezuelan contemporaries, Jesús Rafael Soto, Alejandro Otero and Carlos Cruz-Diez, in the sense that the juxtaposition of these complex patterns captures light and the explosion of color on the canvas. Leufert’s works have been exhibited extensively in Caracas, the United States and Europe and his historical significance is bolstered by his inclusion in the permanent collection of numerous prestigious institutions, such as the Museum of Modern Art, New York; Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; and the Museo de Bellas Artes de Caracas, amongst others.



circa 1964-1965
oil on canvas
34 x 42 in. (86.4 x 106.7 cm)

$50,000 - 70,000 

Sold for $50,000

Contact Specialist
Kaeli Deane
Head of Sale
New York
+1 212 940 1352

Latin America

New York Auction 23 May 2016