Quarter Circle Painting Pink, 2017

Photo: Roman März

Acrylic on canvas
100 x 100 cm (four parts, each)

Comte’s investment in Minimalism, as well as in the synchronized developments in Op Art and earlier methods of geometric abstraction, plays out in diverse and energized ways across her practice. Here she draws on hard-edge painting, a term originally coined in 1959 by art critics Peter Selz and Jules Langsner to describe work being produced in New York in the 1950s, to combine the interests which grow out her rural roots in the Swiss countryside with the principles of a traditionally urban Minimalism. Indeed, the organicism and playfulness of Comte’s practice is often interpreted as a push against the more serious undertones which had originally guided and defined the movement in its distinct detachment from sentimental, subjective, and natural sources of data or inspiration, whilst also remaining in firm alignment with its emphasis on thinking around form. 
The painting is composed of four sections, originally forming a circle, which have been reversed and repositioned so that the vertices which would have combined to form the circle’s center face outwards to compose its four corners. Originally a shaped canvas, the rearrangement of the circle’s four sections thus transforms the painting into what appears to be a normative rectangular configuration. According with Comte’s guidelines, the painting can be displayed at different angles. By experimenting with form in these ways, Comte, much like minimalist artists of the 1960s and early 70s, works across the line dividing painting and sculpture. Quarter Circle Painting is made using vinyl and tape techniques, and hand painting to produce a seemingly manufactured, typical hard-edge effect. Its extreme regularization, along with its proximity and flat application to the wall, further mimics gestures which sought to rethink and expand painting, often through the incorporation of the rear wall into the work. The computation of lines, patterns and grids in Comte’s practice can also be seen as inherited from this tradition, whilst at the same time falling in line with her personal interest in the codes and forms of data which exist organically in nature. She says: “I do really like to play with those geometric shapes; I try to give them a lot of humor and a lot of character. In doing so, something strong and even funny occurs between the paintings, the wall, and the sculptural forms of my installations. It makes them alive.”[1] –Elsa Gray

[1] Conversation between Claudia Comte and Ursula Von Rydingsvard and Kara Rooney. Available at https://gladstonegallery.com/sites/default/files/CC_BrooklynRail_March2015.pdf
Claudia Comte,  was born  1983 in Switzerland. Her work is defined by her interest on the memory of materials and by a careful observation of how the hand relates to  different technologies. 
Engadin Art Talks 2018 I Claudia Comte