Zurique, Switzerland, 1919 –
São Paulo, SP, 1988
Painter, sculptor and poetess, Schendel was interested in empty space and in the translucent. Thus, many of her artworks have the border of the immaterial as the central theme. Monotypes, one of her most important series, was done on transparent sheets of paper, and exhibited in the great retrospective devoted to the artist at the Tate Modern, in London, between the end of 2013 and the beginning of 2014.
To escape Nazi persecution against the Jews, Schendel lived in many European cities during her childhood and youth and, upon arrival in Brazil, in 1949, already brought references that would influence all her works of art – such as the painting of the Italian Giorgio Morandi (1890-1964). In the 1950s, the artist exhibited at the MAM-SP and the 1st Biennial of São Paulo, marking the beginning of her career in the Brazilian art scene and the end of her isolation as an immigrant artist. Her studies increasingly resembled neoconcrete, although she did not actively participate in the neoconcrete movement like Lygia Clark (1920-1988) or Hélio Oiticica (1937-1980).