edited by Stephanie CristelloRead more
A monograph focussing on Kasten's investigations into how moving images and perception play within and through architectural forms.
This book spans five years of Barbara Kasten’s (b. 1936) recent installations following Barbara Kasten: Stages, the artist’s first major museum survey in 2015 at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia, the Graham Foundation in Chicago, and MOCA Pacific Design Center in Los Angeles (2016). Since the 1970s, Kasten’s nearly five-decade engagement with abstraction and light has developed through the lens of sculpture, painting, theater, textile, and installation. Well-known within photographic and contemporary art discourse, the artist has recently begun to be reconsidered within the broader context of architectural theory. Edited by Stephanie Cristello, Barbara Kasten: Architecture & Film (2015–2020) concretizes this legacy within the artist’s practice and contextualizes her ongoing investigations into how moving images and perception play within and through architectural forms.
With a specific focus on architecture and film, whose fields allow for an enriched and expanded conversation beyond the photographic, the texts reach back to incorporate elements of Kasten’s practice since the 1970s that anticipate her current installations, alongside unearthed comparisons and histories. Certain momentous encounters, including Kasten’s Crown Hall (2018) installed within architect Mies van der Rohe’s iconic glass and steel structure and her solo exhibition Scenarios (2020–21) at the Aspen Art Museum, serve as a primer to access her revolutionary methods of abstraction. Replete with full-colour plates, this book features a long-form interview with Hans Ulrich Obrist, commissioned here following significant collaborations on the design of the stage for Obrist’s Interview Marathon (2018) and the film The New Bauhaus (2019) on artist László Moholy-Nagy; curator Humberto Moro’s interwoven comparison to the sensitivities of space, geometry, and colour in the buildings of Mexican architect Luis Barragán; how Kasten’s work remains in conversation with new practitioners from architecture critic and curator Mimi Zeiger; and an elective history informed by Kasten’s early cyanotypes of sacred sites and goddess structures that provide a ‘stage’ to disclose the spiritual basis of her approach to light by editor Cristello.