Eva Hesse

  • Born 1936 in Hamburg, Germany
  • Died 1970 in New York, New York
Eva Hesse is best known for using synthetic materials such as latex, fiberglass, and plastics in her post-Minimalist sculptures. In 1939 she and her family fled Nazi Germany and moved to New York. She first studied art in 1952 at the School of Industrial Art, then at Brooklyn’s Pratt Institute. She subsequently studied drawing at the Art Students League of New York in 1953 and enrolled at Cooper Union the following year. After that, she attended the School of Art at Yale University, graduating in 1959, then worked as a textile designer in New York. In the early 1960s she mostly produced drawings, which were first exhibited in 1961, and had her first solo show, at the Allan Stone Gallery, New York, in 1963. Hesse lived in Germany in 1964, working for the textile manufacturer Friedrich Arnhard Scheidt. During this time she traveled in Europe, experimented with materials, and began to work in relief and sculpture. Returning to New York, Hesse produced her first freestanding sculptures in synthetic materials. In 1968 she gained wider recognition thanks to her show Chain Polymers at Fischbach Gallery in New York. The following year she was also included in the exhibition Live in Your Head: When Attitudes Become Form at Kunsthalle Bern.

Artworks by Eva Hesse in the exhibition