Folienschichtung über kleinen Quadraten auf diagonal geteilter Quadratfläche, 1977–79
Foil, paper, collage 59 x 59 cm
1927 born in Remtengrün/Vogtland
lives and works in Dresden
The “Schichtungen” [Layerings] are, together with his “Seriellen Lineaturen” [Serial Lineaments], Karl-Heinz Adler’s central group of works, on which he has worked since 1957 using various mediums and techniques, including paper, glass, chip board, water colours, painting, metal, and concrete. In the 1970s and 1980s he created a series of collages in black and white, in some cases with one additional colour, entitled “Folienschichtungen” [Foil Layerings] which are among his subtlest works. Their characteristic effect is derived from the progressive layering of squares made of white transparent foil.
Karl-Heinz Adler regards his artistic activity as a form of philosophical contemplation of the universe which he performs by the parsimonious use of visual means. He is concerned with showing the eternal cycle of chaos and order by dividing up the picture in imaginary ways and then piecing it back together. He is one of a small circle of Concrete Constructivist artists from the generation following Hermann Glöckner, who all worked clandestinely in the GDR following the formalism debate in the early 1950s.