london

View of “Imi Knoebel,” 2015. From left: Bild 31.01.2014; Bild 09.12.2014. From the series “Bild,” 2013–.

Imi Knoebel

White Cube | Bermondsey

View of “Imi Knoebel,” 2015. From left: Bild 31.01.2014; Bild 09.12.2014. From the series “Bild,” 2013–.

Imi Knoebel has been worrying away at the problem of abstraction for decades. His 1968 painting Schwarzes Kreuz (Black Cross) paid witty, wonky homage to Malevich’s Black Square of 1915, still a touchstone for the German artist, who, surprisingly, has only just recently had his first London solo exhibition. As if to remind Londoners of what they’ve missed, the show included new additions to his “Kite” series of 1971: white-painted quadrilateral works hung near the top of a small, high-ceilinged gallery, jagged floating shards that, depending on the light and the viewer’s position, became almost invisible at points. Knoebel takes pleasure in playing with the rules and histories of abstraction—in turning pure form into the barest suggestion of a literal object and interrogating the different ways in which the monochrome can be put to work.

A larger gallery contained a number of

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