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Eugen Gabritschevsky: Theater of the Imperceptible

March 14, 2017–August 20, 2017
Exhibition

Throughout his life, Eugen Gabritschevsky displayed a precocious passion for the natural sciences, particularly entomology. Born in Russia, he completed advanced degrees in biology and genetics in Moscow, before pursuing postdoctoral studies in 1925 at Columbia University. Soon after he joined the Pasteur Institute in Paris in 1927, his successful career was cut short by the deterioration of his mental health, leading to his admission into a psychiatric hospital in Germany in 1931. There, and for the rest of his life, Gabritschevsky elaborated a prolific, refined, and heterogeneous body of work—gouaches, drawings, and watercolors on paper—imbued with his early scientific interests, observation skills, and a propensity for experimentation. This first in-depth exhibition of Gabritschevsky’s relatively unknown artistic contribution is composed of more than eighty artworks, a film, publications, and archival documents.

The exhibition is organized in collaboration with the Collection de l’Art Brut, Lausanne, and La maison rouge, Paris. The New York presentation is curated by Valérie Rousseau, PhD, Curator, Self-Taught Art and Art Brut.

A 192-page catalog, Eugen Gabritschevsky, 1893–1979 (Snoeck, 2016), is available.

 

 

Eugen Gabritschevsky (1893–1979), untitled, Haar, Germany, n.d., gouache on paper, 9 5/8 × 15 3/16″, Collection abcd/Bruno Decharme. Photo by Cesar Decharme © Estate of Eugen Gabritschevsky.

Eugen Gabritschevsky (1893–1979), untitled, Haar, Germany, 1938, pencil on paper, 9 3/4 × 13 3/4″, Collection Chave, Vence, France, no. 3949. Photo by Galerie Chave © Estate of Eugen Gabritschevsky.

Eugen Gabritschevsky (1893–1979), untitled, Haar, Germany, 1949, gouache on paper, 8 1/4 × 11 5/8″, Collection Chave, Vence, France, no. 5074. Photo by Galerie Chave © Estate of Eugen Gabritschevsky.

Eugen Gabritschevsky (1893–1979), untitled, Haar, Germany, n.d., gouache on tracing paper, 7 × 9″, private collection, New York. Photo by Adam Reich © American Folk Art Museum.

Eugen Gabritschevsky (1893–1979), untitled, Haar, Germany, 1947, gouache on paper, 8 1/4 × 10 5/8″, Collection Chave, Vence, France, no. 1647. Photo by Galerie Chave© Estate of Eugen Gabritschevsky.

Credits

The exhibition is supported in part by Joyce Berger Cowin, the David Davies and Jack Weeden Fund for Exhibitions, the Ford Foundation, Janssen Research & Development, Just Folk: Marcy Carsey/Susan Baerwald, public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, and the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.