Irene Rice Pereira

Irene Rice Pereira (August 5, 1902 – January 11, 1971) was an American abstract artist, poet, and philosopher who played a significant role in the development of modernism in America. She is known for her work in the Geometric abstraction, Abstract expressionist, and lyrical abstraction genres and her use of the principles of the Bauhaus school. Pereira's paintings and writings were influenced significantly by the complex intellectual currents of the 20th century.

 Pereira was interested in exploring the role of the artist in society, believing artists to be on a par with industrialists. She created "machine paintings" that incorporated images of technological components, including ship's ventilators, generators, and funnels, as well as hinges, levers, and gears.Boat Composite from 1932, in the collection of the Whitney Museum of American Art is an example of her "machine paintings".

 Pereira began to explore abstraction in the late 1930s and her work included fewer references to machines. She became known for the geometric and rectilinear paintings created during this period.Abstraction from 1940, in the collection of the Honolulu Museum of Art, demonstrates her approach to geometric abstraction. She was interested in finding a way to bring light into her work, and began to incorporate materials such as glass, plastic, gold leaf, and other reflective materials into her paintings. She experimented with radium paint, layers of painted glass, and paint on parchment.

 In a 1950 statement, she said "My philosophy is the reality of light and space; an ever flowing--never-ceasing--continuity, unfettered by man made machinery, weight and external likenesses. I use geometric symbols because they represent structural essences and contain infinite possibilities of change and dynamics."Wikipedia

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