Maria Bartuszová ★★★★ Tate Modern | Sep 20, 2022 - Apr 16, 2023


Maria Bartuszová is a Slovakian artist who only enjoyed a small number of exhibitions during her lifetime. This important presentation of the artist's work at the Tate Modern provides a fascinating look at her output over several decades and should consolidate her reputation as an important voice in late twentieth century European sculpture. Bartuszová takes her inspiration from natural forms and her primary medium is plaster. However, this exhibition also displays some of her work in bronze and aluminum, and looks at her various commissions for sculpture in public spaces. Much of the work seeks to capture the ephemeral. Bartuszová uses innovative sculptural methods to record the impression of raindrops and to fix the shape of balloons. Her work is full of fascinating contradictions as the fragile becomes durable and the impermanent becomes imperishable. Similarly, while her shapes are organic they are drained of colour to expose their essence. This exhibition which traces the development of Bartuszová's practice and her spiritual journey is a first-rate introduction to an artist who deserves more attention.

Rated: ★★★★

Reviewed by J.C.
Image: Maria Bartuszová, Untitled 1985. Tate, Presented by the Estate of Maria Bartuszová and Alison Jacques Gallery 2018.

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