Robert Mangold

Year of birth, place
1937, North Tonawanda, New York, United States
Role at the ZKM
in the collection
Robert Mangold was born in North Tonawanda, New York State in 1937. He studied (1956-60) at the Cleveland Institute of Art, Ohio. After being awarded a Yale University Summer Art stipend in 1959, he studied (1960-62) at the Yale University School of Art and Architecture in New Haven, where he met Josef Albers. Mangold lives in New York.

Since 1964 Mangold's work has basically consisted of four pictorial elements: form, colour, line and surface structure. He is concerned to have these four constants interact in his images in as many ways as possible. Lines, for example, stand in direct relation to the surface and overall form of the image because they mostly touch the edges of the picture. The edges of the image correspond with the edges of each plane of colour (Mangold never uses pure colours but dampens tone with white and grey, in order to lessen their intrinsic value). By this means, Mangold treats the elements in the image in an even-handed fashion and prevents their mutual subordination. The original size and shapes of the pictures (usually achieved through combining several canvases), are in most cases irregular. Any hint at the geometrical is compromised, thus denying the balance one expects to find within a picture. Mangold's pictures are by no means the result of spontaneous decisions but emerge, rather, from a series of preparatory sketches. They form homogeneous groups, each devoted to posing a particular question. The »Distorted Square/Circle« series of 1972, for example, concerns the relation between internal and outer form, and the »Attic Series« of 1990 takes as its theme the relation of irregular rectangular forms to the ellipses drawn on them. 

Individual exhibitions (selection)
1964 Thibaut Gallery, New York
1967 »Recent Paintings«, Fischbach Gallery, New York
1970 Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York
1977 Museum Haus Lange, Krefeld; Kunsthalle, Basle
1982 »Paintings 1964-1982«, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam
1984 »Robert Mangold: Paintings 1971-1984«, Akron Art Museum, Akron, Ohio, subsequently at Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston, La Jolla Museum of Contemporary Art, La Jolla, and at venues in Berkeley and Purchase
1987 Galerie Konrad Fischer, Düsseldorf; »Paintings: 1964-1987«, Hallen für Neue Kunst, Schaffhausen
1988 »Robert Mangold: Recent Works«, Bonnefanten Museum, Maastricht
1991 »Robert Mangold: New Painting - Studies for the Attic Series«, Paula Cooper Gallery, New York, subsequently at Daniel Weinberg Gallery, Los Angeles
1993 »Robert Mangold: Paintings Plane/Figure 1992«, Galerie Meert Rihoux, Brussels; »Robert Mangold: Painting as Wall, Werke von 1964-1993«, Hallen für Neue Kunst, Schaffhausen, subsequently at Renn Espace d'Art Contemporaine, Paris
1994 Galerie Konrad Fischer, Düsseldorf
1995 »Robert Mangold: Paintings Plane/Figure 1992«, Westfälisches Landesmuseum, Münster
Group exhibitions (selection)
1962 »Hard Edge Painting«, Galerie Fischbach, New York
1972 documenta V, Kassel
1973 »American Drawing: 1963-1973«, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York
1974 »Geplante Malerei«, Westfälischer Kunstverein, Münster
1977 documenta VI, Kassel
1982 documenta VII, Kassel
1984 »La Grande Parade«, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam
1985 Biennal Exhibition, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York
1989 »Prospect '89«, Kunstverein and Schirn Kunsthalle, Frankfurt/M
1992 »Repetitión/Transformación«, Museo Nacional Centro di Arte Reine Sofía, Madrid
1993 »Singular Dimensions in Painting«, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum SoHo, New York; »Amerikanische Kunst im 20. Jahrhundert: Malerei und Skulptur 1913-1993«, Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin, subsequently at Royal Academy of Arts, London
1994 »Couplet 2«, Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; »The Tradition of the New: Postwar Masterpieces from the Guggenheim Collection«, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York

[David Richardt, 1997]