During her period of artistic production, Ruth Wolf-Rehfeldt was engaged with a vast network of artists known as the Mail Art Movement. Wolf-Rehfeldt and her partner Robert Rehfeldt were pioneers within the GDR of a type of artistic exchange that allowed for the uncensored circulation of art and ideas. Atomic Tree (n.d.) is an example of the artist’s Cold War-era ‘typewritings’ (1972-1989), works on paper made on a typewriter, that are intricate studies spanning concrete poetry, linguistics, graphic design and conceptual art –
innovative hybrids of language, symbols and visual form.
Ruth Wolf-Rehfeldt was born in Wurzen, Germany in 1932. After the war, she settled in Berlin and worked for the exhibitions department at the Academy of Arts. Despite not having a formal artistic education, she produced paintings, pastels, drawings and most notably, her ‘typewritings.’ Although in the beginning of her practice Wolf-Rehfeldt explored semiotics and concrete poetry, she began to shift her focus in later years to abstract compositions, moving from linguistic signage to language as form and matter. After the fall of the Berlin wall and the death of her partner, Wolf-Rehfeldt stopped making work altogether.
Atomic Tree, unknown
10.5 × 14.5 cm