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Lightrotor Heinz Mack


Heinz Mack Lollar 1931 –

Date 1971
Object type sculpture
Medium, technique glass, metal, motor

45 × 45 × 17 cm

Inventory number 78.3.U
Collection Department of Art after 1800
On view This artwork is on view at the permanent exhibition

Members of the ZERO group from Düsseldorf (Mack was a co-founder in 1957) were critical of the abstract expressionist movement that stressed the materiality and individualism of art, and they found a new aesthetic in the use of pure light as an autonomous artistic medium, and in the communal function that can be expressed with it. Mack conducted experiments with countless different techniques. He produced large, kinetic, environmental artworks that examined the physical laws of light, public sculptures constructed from prismatic mirrors, and paintings of dynamic structures. He produced several multiples of his Light Rotor, in a number of different versions. When making his bas-reliefs of oscillating light, he ensured that the corrugated disc behind the ribbed glass sheet would rotate at the perfect speed to ensure that the two patterns came together with a rippling effect and split the light in just the right way. Due to the optical illusion generated from the interference between the two shapes, the circular inner disc seems to be an ellipse in constant motion.

This record is subject to revision due to ongoing research.

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