Research – Construction and deconstruction

Constructivism was founded by Russians Vladimir Tatlin and Alexander Rodchenko around 1915. This particular branch of abstract art concentrated on the technical manipulation of objects to form compositions or patterns, divorced from any particular style.

British proponents of this movement included Victor Pasmore, Kenneth and Mary Martin and Anthony Hill. Drawing on early constructive work by Ben Nicholson, Barbarah Hepworth and Naum Gabo, their work focussed on the geometric and architectural aspects of art with many of the works produced as three dimensional sculptures.

Having researched the above artists, I have selected the artists which resonate most with me and my own practice.

I particularly like the work of Anthony Hill as I am interested in the crossover between all things online and art. His geometric pieces conform to mathematical equations and some of them look like basic fractals, where the result of a mathematical equation is almost infinite. This can be translated by a computation on computer into beautiful designs.

Orthogonal / Diagonal Composition 1954 Anthony Hill born 1930 Purchased 1974

Vector Rhythms 1972 Anthony Hill born 1930 Presented by Rose and Chris Prater through the Institute of Contemporary Prints 1975

“Newton” Fractals

The nylon and Perspex sculptures by Naum Gabo’s are ethereal pieces which seem to float in space and endlessly fascinating to look at.

Terry Pope uses the transparent qualities of his Perspex medium to construct optical structures which, like Gabo’s, weightlessly float in their space. Some of his pieces, like “Subjective Object Construction No.5” call to mind the binary code and old punch cards used in computing.

Also working with Perspex, this time as a suspended grid of rods, Canadian artist, Chris Dorosz creates “virtual” sculptures by dripping paint down the rods to give the illusion of people trapped within the grid. Like Pope, there is an optical illusion effect as the viewer changes position around the piece and the figures appear and disappear. When seen they are only semi-solid, almost like they are being “beamed up” in one of the early Star Trek episodes.

Another artist exploiting the luminosity of working with Perspex is Japanese artist, Nobuhiro Nakanishi. His large-scale installations of multiple transparent sheets of laser prints of scenes showing the subtle passage of time.



Tatlin, Vladimir (1885 – 1953):

Rodchenko, Alexander (1891 – 1956):


Pasmore, Victor (1908 – 1998):

Kenneth Martin (1905 – 1984):

Mary Martin (1907 – 1969):

Anthony Hill (Born 1930):

Naum Gabo (1890 – 1977):

Terry Pope:


Chris Dorosz:

Nobuhiro Nakanishi:

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