Happy Tuesday, collectors! Our newest Vintage Edition hails from Hilma af Klint herself. As you all know by now, Team 20x200 is filled with Hilmaniacs. And this latest af Klint print feels right for the moment. The Dove, No. 1, Group IX/UW is a mediation on balance. Tonal opposites, symmetrical geometry, and the harmony of the color wheel come together in this peaceful print. And who doesn’t need a li’l peace in their lives right now, amirite?
Created in 1910, The Dove, No. 1 follows af Klint’s signature study of dualities. The dove—which represents peace and is often associated with Christianity and the Holy Spirit—is bisected by the vertical helix, a nod to science and mathematics (though predating the discovery of DNA). Religion and science are harmoniously woven throughout the work from the symbolism of darkness and light to the delicate rainbow color refractions carefully executed with geometric precision.
Similar to the Swan Series, The Dove, No. 1 and others in this series strive for equilibrium, often displaying a single form repeated or mirrored in abstract ways across the canvas. At first glance, the composition of The Dove, No. 1 might seem like a departure from af Klint's more biomorphic, organic style pieces, but closer consideration reveals the underlying themes of spiritualism, symbolism, and color-coding which are woven throughout her entire body of work: swaths of color, concentric circles, and curves are also hallmarks of The Ten Largest, No. 7, Adulthood, Group IV. The interplay of light and dark is an important element of The Ten Largest, No. 2, Childhood, Group IV. And the color gradients and reflective light are reminiscent of the pyramid in Altarpiece, No. 1, Group X.
Each of af Klint’s works at its core is meditative. Without any knowledge of the beliefs and motifs behind each piece, you’re drawn into the paintings by meandering lines and strategic color composition. Whether by instinctual thought patterns or connecting to something divine through art, af Klint’s work offers a momentary abstract escape.