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    Arte destructivo / Kenneth Kemble Smith
    Arte destructivo : Barilari, Kemble, López Anaya, Roiger, Seguí, Torrás, Wells. -- Buenos Aires, Argentina : Galería Lirolay, 20 al 30 de noviembre de 1961
    Book/pamphlet article – Catalogs

    Kemble, Kenneth. "Arte destructivo." In Arte destructivo: Barilari, Kemble, López Anaya, Roiger, Seguí, Torrás, Wells. Exh. cat., Buenos Aires: Galería Lirolay, 1961.


Kenneth Kemble tackles the authorship of an idea of destructive art, which is more an experimentation than an -ism. In his view, destructive art evokes the diversity of man’s essential needs: destruction as emotion, the pleasure and the satisfaction of human experience. Through history, humanity has been involved in enormous destruction; for that reason, the artist ought to be very sensitive to the possibility of atomic destruction. In order to channel this destructive tendency in a harmless manner, Kemble suggests an aesthetic experience. By means of it Neo-Dadaism and Surrealism are taken aback. The topicality of Kemble’s surmise is shocking.


Kenneth Kemble (Buenos Aires, 1923–1998) was one of the main artists of the Informalist movement in Argentina. Beginning in 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. Afterwards, he continued his written reflections, with an emphasis on the theory of the creative process.

This document was part of a related set assembled for the show of destructive art that took place at Galería Lirolay, from November 20–30, 1961. Kenneth Kemble, Luis Alberto Wells (1931), Enrique Barilari (1937-2002), Silvia Torrás (1936-1973), Jorge López Anaya (1936), Jorge Roiger (1934), y Antonio Seguí (1934) participated. This exhibition was a crucial moment within the course of the 1960s Argentinean art.

Roberto Amigo.
Fundación Espigas, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Courtesy of the personal archives of Julieta Kemble, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Fundación Espigas, Argentina.