Cover image for Eva Hesse
Eva Hesse
Hesse, Eva, 1936-1970.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
San Francisco : San Francisco Museum of Modern Art ; New Haven : Yale University Press, [2002]

Physical Description:
343 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 30 cm
General Note:
Catalog of an exhibition held at San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Feb. 2-May 19, 2002, Wiesbaden Museum, Germany, June 15-Oct. 13, 2002.

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
N6537.H4 A4 2002 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area-Oversize

On Order

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Although Hesse's revolutionary and enduringly influential sculptures--elegantly fluid abstractions made of latex, rope, and fiberglass that wed the organic with the industrial, the kinetic with the frozen--are always included in modern art surveys, this is the first comprehensive critical study and catalog of her work. Curator Sussman has assembled a strong cast of her peers to discuss various aspects of Hesse's daring oeuvre, from her high-voltage drawings to her use of unconventional materials, "love of line and collapsing form," and self-described "weird humor." Biographical observations are kept succinct, but there's no escaping the poignancy of Hesse's short and "extreme" life. Born in Hamburg in 1936, she fled the Holocaust as a child; her divorced mother committed suicide; her own marriage was unhappy; and she died of cancer at age 34. But her devotion to art was fierce, her talent precocious, and she accomplished in her last five feverish years what others couldn't achieve in decades. Unfortunately, her experimental sculptures are deteriorating, a loss that makes this gorgeously illustrated volume all the more precious. Donna Seaman.

Library Journal Review

The current trend toward having a number of experts write separate essays to accompany the illustrations in an exhibition catalog sacrifices coherency for in-depth analysis of disparate facets of an artist's life or work. This book is a perfect example. This beautifully illustrated catalog of the work of the most exciting female sculptor of the 1960s accompanies a major exhibition this spring at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. It is packed with 22 short essays, six long essays, and a roundtable discussion, all supported by a bibliography and an exhibition history. In her career, tragically cut short by a brain tumor, Hesse (1936-70) produced an extraordinary group of abstract sculptures of resin, latex, and fiber. A second tragedy looms as these unstable materials degrade and the artworks change color and lose their form. This work complements Lucy Lippard's biography of her contemporary and friend, Eva Hesse; Bill Barrette's catalog of Hesse's three-dimensional work, Eva Hesse: Sculpture; Catalogue Raisonn; and Helen Cooper's 1992 Eva Hesse: A Retrospective, which is a less complex analysis than the book in hand. Clearly, the time is ripe for a coherent life of Hesse with an assessment of her work and a catalog of both her well-known sculptures and her lesser-known paintings and drawings. In the meantime, this excellent work will fill the gap. Recommended for art collections and academic libraries. David McClelland, Philadelphia (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

Beautifully designed and printed, this book pays homage to this major conceptual artist of the 1960s. It is published in conjunction with a major exhibition of her life's work co-organized by San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Museum Wiesbaden in Germany. A refugee from Nazi Germany, she graduated from Yale's School of Art and Architecture in 1959. Hesse's artistic career spans all of ten years until her untimely death in 1970. The book documents her transition from painter to sculptor. The contents include eight essays written by critics, art historians, curators, and friends. The most interesting of these is a roundtable discussion on conservation issues related to her sculpture made with such materials as latex, fiberglass, and polyester resin. The text is supplemented with numerous photographs of her life, her sketches, and her influences. More than 150 high-quality color plates document the exhibit. Although not the first book on this artist, this one elevates Hesse's work to the high level of importance it deserves. All levels. A. Calluori Holcombe Kansas State University