H.A. SIGG, THE LEGACY: A RETROSPECTIVE
September 10 – October 26, 2012
FLUSHING, N.Y., August 24, 2012 – Reopening after extensive renovations—part of a major renewal of Queens College’s Kupferberg Center for the Arts—the Godwin-Ternbach Museum will mark the event by exhibiting the work of important Swiss abstract artist H.A. Sigg. This retrospective of nearly 40 paintings and numerous collages celebrates the career of a remarkable octogenarian artist. “The GTM is honored to be the setting for Sigg's profoundly beautiful works and the stage for presenting his rich legacy,” says GTM director Amy Winter. This occasion will also mark the unveiling of the new GTM Lobby Gallery, where rotating displays from the permanent collection will be on view year-round.
Born just outside of Zurich, Switzerland, in 1924, Sigg went to Paris in his twenties to study with the distinguished Cubist and theorist André Lhote. Sigg remains active to this day. His work has been exhibited throughout Europe and the United States and acquired by major collectors, cultural institutions and corporations, including the Barbier-Mueller Museum in Geneva; Kunsthaus Zurich and the Paul and Margrit Hahnloser Collection in Zurich; AXA Winterthur in Switzerland; the Bechtler Family Collections; and Pfizer Inc. in New York. Among his notable public commissions are large-scale murals and stained glass installed at the University of Zurich, the Church of Fribourg, Switzerland, and the offices of Siemens Corporation in Iselin, New Jersey.
Exhibitions of Sigg’s work in the United States have elicited praise from such critics as Mario Naves, Peter Frank, and Jerry Cullum. In New York, the artist is represented by the well-respected Kouros Gallery. Nonetheless, he remains better known in Europe than in America. This show, his largest to date, will give local audiences the opportunity to fully appreciate his work, in which color and light create a feeling of transcendent space and a rhythmic interplay of forms.
“The museum's abundant, soaring space will allow viewers to experience Sigg's elegant abstract paintings to their fullest,” says Winter, who curated the show. “At first, bold, singular forms capture the eye—powerful, sweeping gestures like rivers; mysterious doors and windows of light that simultaneously penetrate and merge with transparent layers of color. Soon you are drawn into the color, willingly immersed in an oceanic medium that exists somewhere betweennature and ‘other’ possibilities.” Winter’s 12-page essay about the artist and his work with full-color reproductions will soon be available online at the museum’s website and hasigg.com/gtm.
Under the Sign of the River III
An opening reception with a gallery talk by Amy Winter will take place on Thursday, September 13, at 6-8 pm. The public is invited to the event, but must call to request an invitation. For further information about the exhibition and programs, call 718-997-4747 or visit qcpages.qc.cuny.edu/godwin_ternbach. Exhibition entry and public programs are FREE.
The exhibition was organized by the Godwin-Ternbach Museum, with kind support from the Consulate General of Switzerland in New York and the Friends of the Godwin-Ternbach Museum.
Parallel with the exhibition, as part of Queens College’s Year of India programming, the GTM will host “Representing South Asia on Film,” a festival of Indian cinema. Featuring free public screenings of 16 titles, the series will begin on September 12 and run throughout the academic year. For additional information, visit the museum’s website.
Mon.–Thurs. 11 am to 7 pm, Sat. 11 am to 5 pm
The museum’s schedule reflects the college’s academic calendar. It is closed during college recesses and holidays. Call 718-997-4747 to verify dates of current and upcoming exhibitions and events.
By car, the Godwin-Ternbach Museum is 30 minutes from midtown Manhattan. Directions are at www.qc.cuny.edu/welcome/directions.
The Godwin-Ternbach Museum, a part of the Kupferberg Center for the Visual and Performing Arts at Queens College, is the only comprehensive collection of art and artifacts in the borough of Queens, housing over 5,000 objects that date from ancient to modern times. The mission of the GTM has grown over time from serving as a teaching museum for the benefit of art and art history students to embracing all disciplines and an increasingly diverse and engaged community. All exhibitions are free, as are their related lectures, symposia, gallery talks, workshops, films, concerts, and tours.