Construction through a Plane (Construction on a Plane)
© Nina Williams

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Construction through a Plane (Construction on a Plane) about 1937
This is one of the first works that Gabo made with the newly invented plastic, Perspex. Gabo found that Perspex was easier to manipulate and bend than other plastics that he had previously worked with. It is a superb example of constructivist sculpture, which is made by combining separate elements, instead of using traditional techniques, such as carving or modelling to create a single form. There are two other versions of this work, one with a black centre and one with a white centre. The work conveys an abstract sense of energy and movement, with planes springing dynamically from the central black area.

Glossary Open

Abstract art

Art in which there is no attempt to represent anything existing in the world, particularly used of the 20th century onwards. ‘Abstraction’ refers to the process of making images that may in part derive from the visible world but which are reduced to basic formal elements.

Constructivism

A geometric, abstract style founded in the early twentieth century in Russia by Vladimir Tatlin. The movement reflected the machine age through its use of new technology and materials and applied its theories to architecture and design as well as fine art. Exiled artists such as Naum Gabo helped to spread the Constructivist ideas. ‘Constructionist’ and ‘constructed abstract art’ are also terms used to describe work relating to these ideas.

Abstract art, Constructivism

Details

  • Acc. No. GMA 4405
  • Medium Perspex with wood base
  • Size 48.20 x 48.20 x 21.60 cm
  • Credit Purchased with funds bequeathed by Mr Alan Roger and help from the Art Fund and the Henry Moore Foundation 2001