Geta Brătescu

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“To me, drawing is not simply a profession; it is the release of an intrinsic, structural energy, a joy.”

photo: Aurora Dediu

Born in 1926 in Ploiești, Romania, she graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Bucharest and took degrees at the Faculty of Letters and of Philosophy in parallel. Although art in Romania was subjected to stringent political control at the time, Geta Brătescu tried to find an apolitical approach to art. Her art reflected her passion for literature, and she was inspired by the writings of Samuel Beckett and Greek mythology.

She experimented with a wide variety of media to express her own mythology: drawing, textile collage, video, animation, installation, photography, and graphic design. A recurring theme in her work was her commitment to the drawn line, whether created in fabric with a sewing machine, by the body performing through space, or found within her detailed classical draughtsmanship. Her work can be found in many collections throughout the world, including those of the Tate in London, MoMA in New York, the Tyler Collection of Romanian and Modern Art and Warsaw’s Museum of Modern Art. She died in 2018 in Bucharest, Romania.

Game, 2017

ink and collage on paper, 26,5 x 20 cm

She developed her experiments with line and colour in groups of works that took years to complete, such as Untitled, The Line – Game of Forms or The Game of Shapes. Speaking of her work, she said: “it doesn’t matter what I draw with, when I examine the process, I feel that the musicality of the line is in my very nature. I used to like dancing. When I draw, I can say that my hand is dancing.”