Op art pioneer Yaacov Agam’s abstract artworks—which range from painting, sculpture, drawing, and ceramics, to stained glass and etching—typically incorporate light, sound, or viewer participation. The son of an orthodox rabbi, Agam first trained as an artist in Jerusalem, going on to combine formalist art with kabbalistic mysticism, and he is credited with introducing geometric abstraction to Israeli art. Agam’s best known series of works, comprised of painted strips that appear to shift and oscillate as viewers alter their points of view, would become known as “Agamographs”. He has also produced public commissions, including the world’s largest menorah, installed in New York City, and Star of Peace for Ben-Gurion university that fused the five-pointed star of Islam with the six-pointed Star of David. Agam met and was influenced by the Bauhaus artist and teacher Johannes Itten in Zurich, and also cites Wassily Kandinsky’s abstraction as an influence on his practice.
Israeli, b. 1928, Rishon LeZion, Israel, based in Paris, France