Institute offers glimpse into Herbert Bayer | AspenTimes.com

Institute offers glimpse into Herbert Bayer

Stewart Oksenhorn

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The exhibit opening today at the Aspen Institute barely scratches the surface of the artist. But in the case of Herbert Bayer, even a sliver of his output reveals the breadth and quality of his work.

The exhibit, titled “joella’s bayers,” features drawings, paintings, photographs, sculpture maquettes, and photo montages ” a form that Bayer co-invented ” from early-period Bayer, the 1920s to the 1940s, most of it before he made Aspen his home. (The exhibit title refers to the fact that much of the work comes from the collection of Bayer’s late widow, Joella; the lack of capital letters plays off the alphabet that Bayer, a noted typographist, invented, also lacking caps.)

Though the exhibit has none of Bayer’s architectural designs, graphic work, posters, commercial work, or earth sculptures (another of his inventions), the pieces displayed demonstrate his genius for emotion, design, continuing themes and color (especially Bayer blue, a shade that still can be glimpsed in various spots around Aspen).

“joella’s bayers,” curated by Hugo Anderson (nephew of Bayer patron, the late Aspenite Robert O. Anderson), opens with a reception today at 4:30 p.m. and runs through March 31. An extended look at Bayer’s work is available at Sardella Fine Art, which has “Herbert Bayer: Bauhaus in Aspen,” also opening this week.

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