A New Show at Selfridges Introduces an Internet-Addled Generation to the Op Art of Victor Vasarely (Don’t Worry, There Are NFTs Too)

They may have been created decades ago, but Op Art pioneer Victor Vasarely’s dizzying geometric shapes and colorful graphics have never felt as relevant as they do now, in the age of digital art and NFTs. At least, that’s what an exhibition opening on Thursday at one of London’s biggest department stores strives to demonstrate.

Running until March 31 at Selfridges, the show features a total of 55 works ranging from canvases to ceramics and tapestries. It marks the first display of work by the late French-Hungarian artist in the United Kingdom in more than 50 years.

But the exhibition isn’t just about exposure—it’s also about raising money. Thirty-seven of the works—together with a series of freshly minted NFTs created by London-based NFT platform Substance—are available for sale. Proceeds will go toward the restoration of monumental works at the Fondation Vasarely Museum in Aix-en-Provence, France.

The show also features a creative partnership with fashion brand Paco Rabanne, which will be launched in a new 2022 collection inspired by Vasarely’s art at the Oxford Street store.

Victor Vasarely at Selfridges in London’s Oxford Street. Photo credit: Andrew Meredith and Selfridges.

The exhibition strives to bring the legacy of the Op Art movement pioneer to life while introducing him to a younger audience, said Pierre Vasarely, president of Fondation Vasarely.

“He wanted to promote art [through] architecture, urbanism, music, fashion, just like the way people think in recent years,” Vasarely told Artnet News. “He wanted to bring art to the city, to the streets, to everyone.”

Pierre Vasarely said his grandfather originally created the works on view, including the geometric designs gracing the storefront, by hand, before the introduction of computers. “It was revolutionary,” he said. “The NFT trend today is heading toward this direction.”

Victor Vasarely, Okta Cor (1973) Acrylic on canvas. Photo: Fabrice Lepeltier and Fondation Vasarely.

The physical works available for sale, including 15 unique works and 20 silkscreen prints, originally belonged to French collectors. A total of 12 Vasarely NFTs attached to Vasarely’s monumental works at the foundation will be released, with the first batch of six going live on February 16 and the remaining six available on March 12. Each NFT can be purchased at the London store in person or online on Subtance’s platform (and can later be accessed in the metaverse, naturally). Prices have yet to be announced.

Born in Pécs, Hungary, in 1906, Vasarely first studied medicine before venturing into painting. He moved to Paris in 1930 and began experimenting with Surrealism and Abstract Expressionism before developing his signature checkerboard paintings in the 1940s. He died at the age of 90 in 1997. He was the subject of a retrospective at Paris’s Centre Pompidou in 2019.

Victor Vasarely, Bleu n° IIIV (1970-2009). Photo: Fabrice Lepeltier and Fondation Vasarely

The artist built Fondation Vasarely between 1973 and 1976. It was declared a historic monument in 2013 and has annual attendance of around 100,000 visitors. The foundation is not the first to create NFTs based on a late artist’s work: Alphonse Mucha’s foundation debuted its own line of NFTs at the end of last year.

Pierre Vasarely said he has “no idea” how much money the sales will raise, but he hopes the project will allow more people to see Vasarely’s art, particularly in a moment when travel and gathering indoors is difficult.

“We make this exhibition at Selfridges with technology to show how contemporary his work still is today,” he said. “It is a good opportunity to imagine what Vasarely would’ve done if he had access to computers back then.”

The post A New Show at Selfridges Introduces an Internet-Addled Generation to the Op Art of Victor Vasarely (Don’t Worry, There Are NFTs Too) appeared first on Artnet News.

Share This Post:

Share on facebook
Facebook
Share on twitter
Twitter
Share on pinterest
Pinterest
Share on linkedin
LinkedIn

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

On Key

Related Posts

Vintage Photos of People Posing With Their Automobiles in the 1980s

The ’80s were an exhilarating time for music, fashion, and culture. Young people were moving to big cities in droves and embodying the catchphrase “dress for success.” Fashion of the 1980s placed heavy emphasis on cheap clothes and fashion accessories and very big poofy hair. Apparel tended to be very bright and vivid in appearance.

Photographer Captures Two Bees Sleeping in Flowers And It’s So Cute

Bees play an important role in our lives. They are the world’s most important pollinator of food crops. It’s estimated that one-third of the food we consume each day relies on pollination mainly by bees. It’s not easy being a bee, bees work hard and they need their beauty sleep as well. Recently, wildlife photographer

The Little Trashmaid: Artist Imagines Ariel in the 21st Century

The story of The Little Mermaid was written over 180 years, in 1836, when Danish author Hans Christian Andersen wrote it. However, the best-known version of the story is probably the Disney movie from 1989. Many artists imagined Ariel in their own way and one German artist did the same. Stephanie Hermes, also known as

The Epic Street Art Murals of Beau Stanton

A multidisciplinary artist, Beau Stanton works on paintings, murals, large-scale installations, stained glass, mosaics and multimedia animations. Emphasizing his work on technique and meticulous craftsmanship, Stanton draws on historical ornamentation, religious iconography and classical painting. A keen interest in iconic visual symbols and Jungian archetypes is often the basis of his images. Originally from California

Scroll to Top

ARE YOU IN?

Yes! Sign me up for AFYC's weekly newsletter featuring valuable info for artists, nonprofits, upcoming contests, and our new product offerings.

Count Me In!