Documents of 20th-century Latin American and Latino Art

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Synopsis

Kenneth Kemble wrote about two exhibitions by artists who are presently not well known: Juan Badaracco and Sergio Ferraro. Through formal examination, Kemble pointed out qualities galore and pictorial sensibility in such works. Kemble especially analyzed, as well, the problem of color in these works. His analysis made it possible to reflect on aspects concerning Argentinean art, such as the tendency towards refinement (in his opinion, an illness of local artists), which is also an important issue for the Informalist movement. 

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Kenneth Kemble (Buenos Aires, 1923–1998) was one of the main artists of the Informalist Movement in Argentina. Since 1956, he experimented with collages, assemblages, reliefs, and informal and sign painting. Kemble participated in the exhibitions of the Asociación Arte Nuevo [New Art Association], a bastion of abstract trends. In 1959, he was part of the exhibition Movimiento Informal [Informalist Movement] at the Van Riel Gallery. In 1961, Kemble was the driving force behind the exhibition that presented arte destructivo [destructive art]. He practiced art criticism, mainly at the Buenos Aires Herald (a newspaper for the English community in the capital, founded in 1876) between 1960 and 1963. Afterward, he continued his written reflections, with an emphasis on the Creative Process theory. 
 
This document integrates his collection of art critiques published in the Buenos Aires Herald, presenting a solid, interpretive broad view of Argentinean art of the early sixties. In his news articles, Kemble was attentive to both, the emergence of a new generation of artists as well as vanguard expressions, accounting for the consolidation of the informalists. Moreover, as he highlighted the first exhibits of the Instituto Di Tella [Di Tella Institute] and the appearance of Otra Figuración [Another Figuration] and Pop Art, he revealed the emergence of a new type of collector.

This document shows the endurance of Kemble’s art criticism that extended from an early opposition to the Informalist trend to refinement and pictorial decorativism, in his opinion, a tendency of Argentinean artists.

Researcher
Roberto Amigo.
Team
Fundación Espigas, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Credit
Courtesy of the personal archives of Julieta Kemble, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Location
Archivo Kenneth Kemble, Argentina.