Artist profile

Friedrich Vordemberge-Gildewart

Friedrich Vordemberge-Gildewart was a German abstract painter, typographer and teacher. He was one of the first painters to work throughout his career in an abstract style. Born in Osnabrück he moved to Hanover in 1919 to study architecture and sculpture at the School of Arts and Crafts and the Polytechnic. He made his first abstract reliefs in 1919. He met Lissitzky, Schwitters, Arp and van Doesburg, and joined the de Stijl group in 1924. His paintings were geometrical abstract pictures, frequently with a diagonal emphasis. In 1927 he founded 'Die abstrakten hannover' with Schwitters, Nitzschke and Buchheisterin and had his first one-man exhibition at the Galerie Povolozky, Paris, in 1929. Became a member of Abstraction-Création in 1932 and moved from Hanover to Berlin in 1936, then fled Germany in 1937 due to Nazi persecution; first to Switzerland and then in 1938 to Amsterdam. His later works had a wider range of vivid colours. Appointed director of the visual communication course at the Hochschule für Gestaltung, Ulm, in 1954 by Max Bill. Vordemberge-Gildewart died in Ulm in 1962.

Selected exhibitions

Born in Osnabrück
Studied interior design, sculpture and architecture at the Kunstgewerbeschule (School of Decorative Arts) and the Technische Hochschule, Hanover
Founded Gruppe K together with Hans Nitschke.
Became a member of Der Sturm in Berlin
Became a member of De Stijl
Founder member (together with Kurt Schwitters and Carl Buchheister) of Die Abstakten Hannover, and an association of commercial designers, the Ring Neuer Werbegestalter
Awarded a prize at the II. Biennale in Sao Paolo
Appointed Director of the Department of Visual Communication at the Hochschule für Gestaltung in Ulm
Participated in First Documenta, Kassel
Died in Ulm, Germany.

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