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Jannis Kounellis

b. 1936, Greece

Untitled, 1984

Steel, metal, painted wood and wax

98.8 x 155.3 x 15 cm

Early on in his artistic career, Jannis Kounellis felt that the conventions of European aesthetics were insufficient to encapsulate the erratic and fragmented nature of a postwar contemporary society. Consequently, his works moved towards a steadily more fragmented and architectural direction. Using organic and industrial materials, his works poetically conveyed the increasingly confrontational interplay between nature, culture, and the constructed environment.

The elements of metal, wood, and wax used in this work are among his established repertoire of materials, acting as a stylistically identifiable marker across the various assemblages that he created. Allegories can be drawn to society and its environment through this fusion of the organic and inorganic, reflecting Kounellis’ fascination with the role of humanity in the creation and consumption of art.

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