A long-awaited retrospective of the Bauhaus weaver Anni Albers is currently on show at Tate Modern, London. The eleven rooms are a sensual introduction to the complex depths of Albers’s mind; flowing softly between walls of stretched translucent scrim, one is invited to slowly breathe in the works.
The pieces draw the eye, body, mind and hand (if only they could touch) toward the floating, brocaded, twisted, and manipulated fibres. Albers’ mastery of weave entices the viewer to follow the threads over, under, up, across, through and behind – truly a pleasure for the senses, as encapsulated by a pivotal quote from Albers herself:
‘To let the threads be articulate again and find a form for themselves to no other end than their own orchestration, not to be sat on, walked on, only to be looked at, is the raison d’être of my pictorial weavings.’
It would be impossible to cover the spectrum of Albers’ weaving know-how and the seemingly effortless communication articulated through her writings, artworks, designs and teachings… ‘she transformed the way weaving could be understood as a medium for art, design and architecture.’ The physical embodiment of Albers’ spiritual vision is certainly something not to be missed this Autumn.
Opposite: Dotted, 1959, Wool