Circle : international survey of constructive art editors: J.L. Martin, Ben Nicholson and N. Gabo.
New York : Praeger, 1971. Hardcover. 291 pages ; photographic illustrations ; 25 cm. $18.50 dust jacket. Very good copy; no underlines or markings within the pages. Satisfaction guaranteed!
CIRCLE ; International Survey of Constructive Art
Edited by J. L. Martin, Ben Nicholson, N. Gabo
This famous manifesto, which first appeared in 1937, has been unobtainable for many years. It is now reproduced, with a new introduction, for recent generations of students and for all those interested in the history and development of modern art.
At the time of its original publication, CIRCLE proposed not only to bring the then new Constructivist ideas to the attention of the general public but also to give their major exponents "the means of expressing their views and of maintaining contact with each other," to provide a "medium for the interchange of ideas." From this it will be seen that the artists involved were not members of a formal movement but represented various tendencies that, when juxtaposed, were found to have important similarities, both stylistic and theoretical. Herein lies much of the book's excitement as a document and its undeniable significance for art history.
Naum Gabo's opening essay, "The Constructivist Idea in Art," introduces the theme of the collection. Constructivist painting is then considered by Piet Mondrian ("Plastic Art and Pure Plastic Art") and Ben Nicholson; sculpture, by Gabo ("Sculpture—Carving and Construction in Space"), Barbara Hepworth, and Henry Moore; and architecture, by Marcel Breuer and Richard J. Neutra. Moholy-Nagy writes on "Light Painting" and Walter Gropius on "Art Education and the State"; town-planning, typography, and the relationship of art to science are also seen through Constructivist eyes. Major critical articles come from Herbert Read, Sigfried Giedion, Lewis Mumford, J. L. Martin.
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