What is X Above Left you say? This week our curator Matthew Gale investigates the appearance of alphabetical symbols in Paul Klee’s work, as present in his 1915 watercolour Green X Above Left

Paul Klee Green X Above Left 1915 Zentrum Paul Klee, Private Collection

Paul Klee
Green X Above Left 1915

Zentrum Paul Klee, Private Collection

One of the 1915 watercolours in our show The EY Exhibition: Paul Klee: Making Visible is known as ‘With Green X Above Left’. This simple description nevertheless draws attention to Paul Klee’s use of alphabetical, mathematical or other symbols. Here the X anchors the nearby planes of colour and helps to emphasise their flatness.

Elsewhere a ghostly X floats above the more definite T in a work titled Picture with Letters painted in 1924. They sit as if laid-on the surface, though are too evidently hand-painted to pass for the stencils or collage of cubism.

The EY Exhibition: Paul Klee: Making Visible is at Tate Modern from 16 October 2013 – 9 March 2014

Comments

George Foskett

Interesting stuff