Foreshadowing of MoMA's Inventing Abstraction, 1910-1925
& Mapping a Movement- in today's terms.
Dickerman and Masha Chlenova, Curator and Assistant Curator, of MoMA
teamed up with Paul Ingram, Professor at Columbia Business School, to
build a virtual and interactive map of the artistic relationships around
the Abstract movement. An identifying feature of Abstraction was its
vastness- its reaching beyond visual arts to encompass performing arts-
theater, dance, and music as well as linguistic arts- poetry and spoken
word. This mass of a cultural movement had seen no match since the
What Dickerman and Ingram's teams produced is a web
of connections between artists. Beginning with an Excel spreadsheet
connections like we would see today in Facebook or LinkedIn began to
grow. The social media model was in some respects the intent of the
mapping, or at least its frame. Conversations regarding who-knew-who and
how were what built the visual web.
The resulting web is a
spidering of lines between artists. Major figures become evident, with
the most pinnacle figures having the most connections. The web does more
than show, it tells. It is interactive, and users of it will be able to
click on artists and connections to reveal information about creative
leaders and their alliances. As Ingram explains to his MBA's it is the
"quality of "'between-ness'" in the network—being on multiple paths
between others—[that] is associated with creativity" (ArtNews).
Learn more in ArtNews ,which continues with a look back at earlier art-mapping models, their history, and relevance.Forthcoming MoMA Exhibition:Inventing Abstraction, 1910 - 1925
December 23 - April 15, 2012
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