The life’s work of Vera Molnar, recognized as one of the pioneers of computer art, is honoured by the new exhibition at the Ludwig Museum – Museum of Contemporary Art, which the audience can visit starting this Saturday.
The exhibition titled Á la Recherche de Vera Molnar – Works of Vera Molnar and Contemporary Reflections consists of two parts. The first part presents the artist through important pieces of her oeuvre, while in the second part, international luminaries of new media art as well as artists personally acquainted with Vera Molnar pay tribute to the artist with works created specifically for the exhibition, stated director of the Ludwig Museum Julia Fabényi at the press preview of the exhibition on Friday.
The Hungarian-born French visual artist, Vera Molnar, passed away in December last year, shortly before her 100th birthday. As it was mentioned, the exhibition was planned for this significant occasion, and the artist herself participated in the planning during the initial stages.
The exhibition is realized in collaboration between the Ludwig Museum, the Stiftung für Kunst und Kultur, and the Vintage Gallery, with lending institutions and galleries including, among others, the Hungarian National Gallery and the Broich Digital Art Museum.
Vera Molnar completed her studies at the Budapest Academy of Fine Arts in 1947. Then, by means of a state scholarship, she travelled to Rome with her future husband before settling in Paris shortly thereafter, where she lived and worked until her passing. From the 1960s, she turned towards mathematics and information theory, becoming one of the first computer artists in 1968. She named her method ‘machine imaginaire’, creating digital drawings and algorithmic paintings based on geometric shapes. According to her basic concept,
she introduced ‘1 per cent disorder’ into an organized basic structure.
Zsófia Máté, the curator of the exhibition, mentioned during the press tour that Vera Molnar was equally interested in art historical aspects and in creating with computers. As stated in the museum’s press release, the title of the exhibition refers to Vera Molnar’s series A la Recherche de Paul Klee, recalling the artist’s experiments to examine her defining art historical models with her own creative methods and tools, highlighting that similar to the narrator of Marcel Proust’s novel series,
Molnar was interested not only in recalling the past but also in reinterpreting it in the context of the present.
The exhibition features works by the artist created between 1950 and 2022. She created hundreds of series, among them pieces paying homage to Monet, Cézanne, Dürer, and Paul Klee, which are also on display at the current exhibition.
At the initiative of Josef Broich, several contemporary artists who felt that Vera Molnar had had a significant influence on their work created artworks in her honour, which can be seen in the second part of the exhibition. Richard Castelli, a French art advisor and producer, curated this section.
One of the most interesting works of the exhibition is the kinetic sculpture by the u2p050 artistic team, which displays a computer algorithm through vibrations and various sounds.
The exhibition can be visited from Saturday until 14 April at the Ludwig Museum.
Sources: Hungarian Conservative/Ludwig Museum/MTI