DAILY ART FIX: Hilma af Klint Pioneered Abstractions and Spoke with Spirits.

Art world links which caught my eye…

Hilma af Klint works at a

Hilma af Klint works at a 2014 show of her art.

The works of Swedish artist Hilma af Klint (October 26, 1862-October 21, 1944) has seen a surge in interest recently. The non-objective paintings she created while following spiritualist practices are being considered the innovation which led to abstract art as a dominant force in Western art.

I would suggest that was not a positive influence.

Key quote from the article:

Starting in 1896, af Klint and four of her female artist friends formed a cadre known as the Friday Group, which was dedicated to the study of Judeo-Christian scripture, followed by séances intended to reach beings that existed beyond the visible world. Eventually, they began calling themselves the Five, and they continued meeting for years. Their séances proved particularly influential for af Klint, whose leap into abstraction was spurred on by the deities who spoke to her. By 1904, she was claiming that she’d been commanded to do artworks by these beings, and working under the sign of one such deity named Amaliel, she undertook a full year of preparation to create what would become some of her most famous works…

During her séances held with the Five, af Klint felt that she was being commanded to build a temple to house a number of artworks. “Amaliel offered me a work and I answered immediately Yes,” she wrote in her notebook. “This was the large work, that I was to perform in my life.” And indeed it wound up being her largest realized project: She produced more than 190 paintings total for a series known as “Paintings for the Temple,” with a whopping 111 of them alone being produced between 1907 and 1908. Ultimately, the temple she envisioned these works—a four-story form with a spiral staircase at its center—was never realized.

Read the full article here: ARTNEWS – Hilma af Klint Pioneered Abstractions and Spoke with Spirits. Here’s Why She’s Important.

Hilma af Klint, 'Altarbilder, Grupp X, nr 1. Altarbild', 1915.

Hilda af Klint “Altarbilder,Grupp X, nr 1. Altarbild” 1915


RICHARD BLEDSOE is a visual story teller; a painter of fables and parables. He received his BFA in Painting from Virginia Commonwealth University. Richard has been an exhibiting artist for over 25 years, in both the United States and internationally. He lives and paints happily in Phoenix, Arizona, with his wife Michele and cat Motorhead. He is the author of Remodern America: How the Renewal of the Arts Will Change the Course of Western Civilization.


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Visit other posts for more commentary on the state of the arts.

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