Sophie Taeuber-Arp's Vanishing Lines

In what is, prima facie, a mesh of abstract lines, no few of the works that Sophie Taeuber-Arp completed between 1940 and 1942 in her exile in southern France manifest a symbolism of war, persecution and flight. The compositions of lively, curved lines have, in part, something lost, floating, broken, irrational about them, which, in all Taeuber-Arp's earlier works, would have been wholly uncharacteristic. In Taeuber-Arp's cycle of works entitled 'Lignes...', an aspect of DADA re-emerges – the (meaning-denying) art of refugees from war. The animation, which combines eight of her works from the 'Lignes' series with photographs from WW2, shows the connection and the discrepancy between Taeuber-Arp's artistic activity and the world of war and persecution. The video thereby highlights a dilemma facing artists to this day, of making art in a time of injustice and violence. There is good reason to animate Sophie Taeuber-Arp's compositions, as she developed a striking number of variations out of the same basic elements for her series and because dance, movement and rhythm play an important role throughout her œuvre.

  • Myriam Thyes
  • Myriam Thyes
  • Myriam Thyes
  • Silvia Pachler
  • Project Title (Original Language):
    Sophie Taeuber-Arps Fluchtlinien
  • Project Type:
    Animation, Experimental, Other
  • Runtime:
    10 minutes 10 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    July 6, 2015
  • Production Budget:
    700 EUR
  • Country of Origin:
  • Shooting Format:
    HD 2D animation
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • Barcelona Planet Film Festival, ES, 2 2016.
    February 1, 2016
    Spanish premiere
  • artvideoKOELN international, Torrance Art Museum
    Torrance, CA
    United States
    April 28, 2016
    USA premiere
    (screening for 2 months in exhibition)
  • Animation Day In Cannes Catalog
    May 18, 2016
    French premiere
Distribution Information
  • imai - inter media art institute
    Country: Germany
    Rights: All Rights
Director Biography - Myriam Thyes

Myriam Thyes is a new media artist from Switzerland, living in Germany. 1986-92 Academy of Fine Arts, Dusseldorf, Prof. Nan Hoover. Since 1994, Thyes participates in exhibitions and festivals internationally.
Fundings by: City of Dusseldorf, Swiss Federal Office of Culture, Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia, State of Luxembourg, State of Northrhein-Westfalia. AIR: Cité Internationale des Arts, Paris (1990); Glasgow, UK (2008); Styria AIR, Graz, Austria (2015).
Awards: Depict Award 2005, Encounters Festival, Bristol, UK; MultiMedia Prize 2006, Avanca Festival, Portugal.
Publications: UmBildungen / ReVisions (2007); Glasgow Styles / Magnify Malta (2012), both Kehrer Verlag Heidelberg.
Artistic media: video art, animation, digital imagery. Realizes as well participatory media art projects.

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Director Statement

My themes deal with symbols, myths and visual signs from architecture, politics, films, and religions. My artworks are explorations of their meanings, a questioning, reassessments, and creations of new associations. In order to undermine entrenched representations, I work directly with them, to develop them further, transform them and juxtapose them against new representations. My works are conceptual and sensual at the same time, using animation, abstraction, and found footage to present critical views of political, social and religious systems. Symbols and mythic figures undergo transformations, start to communicate and build new relations - symbols of identities turn into elements of dialogues.

Although my artworks and projects look different in style, they all have something in common: Constructive and deconstructive visual composition, as well as a content that doesn't tell stories but rather comments on society, art history and philosophy.