b. 1923, Caracas, Venezuela
Carlos Cruz-Diez has dedicated his life to the research of colour, lines and perception. Considered one of the precursors of the Optical and Kinetic art movement from the 1950s, his work is considered a canon in the contemporary art stage and continues to influence art culture around the world.
Cruz Diez describes his discourse as “Art of Real Movement and Space”. His research into the additive, reflective, and subtractive effects of colour, shows that perception of a chromatic phenomenon does not rely on form. Beyond formal research, for the artist, colour is an experience in itself that can be perceived and enjoyed without interpretation or knowledge. Through interaction, the viewer becomes an accomplish to the artist, an essential participant in the artwork itself.
Cruz-Diez is internationally considered a Master of the 20th and 21st centuries for his contributions to the theory and practice of colour. Since his first solo exhibition at the Venezuelan-American Institute in Caracas in 1947, his participation in MoMA’s polemical 1965 show of then-new Op work and representing Venezuela at the Venice Biennale, he has participated in hundreds of exhibitions and retrospectives around the world.
Carlos Cruz-Diez’ works have become part of the most prominent public collections including, amongst others, MoMA, Tate Modern, the Victoria and Albert Museum, Georges Pompidou, the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de París, Kunstmuseum (Switzerland); Wallraf-Richartz Museum (Germany); Museum of Contemporary Art (Sydney) and the National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts. The artist has also executed numerous large-scale public projects and architectural interventions around the world, all of which were developed as investigations into visual and perceptual experiences of colour.
Cruz-Diez’s work has been well appreciated in Asia Pacific since1988 when Physichromie Double Face was installed in the Olympic Park in South Korea. He has held multiple museum exhibitions, most notably the touring exhibition Circumstance and Ambiguity of Colour, at the Museum of the Central Academy of Fine Arts, Beijing; Fudan Shanghai Institute of Visual Arts, Shanghai; Academy of Art, Hangzhou; Jiangsu Provincial Art Museum, Nanjing; and Henan Art Museum, Zhengzhou. He has also exhibited at Guangdong Museum of Art and the Beijing Art Museum of Imperial City in China; the Hong Kong University Museum and Art Gallery; the National Museum of Contemporary Art Deoksugung, the Jeonbuk Province Art Museum and the Sang Sang Tok Tok Gallery in South Korea; and, The National Art Centre, the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Himeji City Museum of Art, the Urawa Art Museum and the Tsukuba Museum of Art in Japan.
At 93, Cruz Diez remains a very active artist, tirelessly expanding his research into colour, using new technologies and open to collaborations with younger artists who admire his work, such as Lui Bolin. Creative brands such as Prada have paid tribute to his legacy by covering their Asian retail stores with modules that produce a change in the color spectrum depending on the intensity of the light and the movement of the observers.
Puerta Roja represents the work of Carlos Cruz Diez in Asia since 2016