The current exhibition, Abstract and Captured Forms, 1967 to 1975, explores 2 series of paintings, Captured Forms and Abstractions that Rector initiated in 1967. Captured Forms was one of several black and white series initiated in 1967 that consisted of bold Modernist structures with slight optical effects that evoked the sensation of vibration or movement. The other series were Reflections and Shadows. Her first series of black and white paintings, Visual Participation, were hard-edge, consisting of arrays of lines, dots and circles along with other fragmented shapes that created optical and illusory effects. Rector’s Abstraction series is far reaching, lasting until 2014 and included black and white as well as color-based abstractions, hard-edge forms, optical patterns and Color Field painting.
Like other artists throughout the US in the 1960s who explored Post-painterly abstraction, Rector worked independently and in isolation finding her own way through a myriad of aesthetic changes and approaches. Yet similar themes and tendencies emerged in parallel across many regions of the country. In Rector’s paintings, transitions from Modernist geometric structures and illusory effects gave way to her own experimental paintings that were comprised of 2 canvases stretched one in front of the other with about 2 inches separating them. The front canvas was surgically cut in select areas coincident with the compositions to create irregular shaped openings that revealed the canvas below. The shape of the openings clearly interacted with the painted structures in her compositions, but added a mysterious portal, another dimension and view to the world beyond the surface of the canvas. These openings in the canvas were evocative of Lucio Fontana’s Spatial Concept works, but with greater precision, complexity and integral to the composition. Later paintings explored lyrical abstraction, Color Field painting and a return to hard-edge color-based abstractions.
About Marge Rector:
Rector has dedicated her fifty-year career to painting non-objective abstractions. Trained as a commercial artist, she received her BA degree from Texas Technological College (currently, Texas Tech) in 1950 and worked professionally in that field until 1964. At that time, Rector decided to pursue a career in fine art and studied at the Dallas Museum of Fine Arts. Emerging from her studies about the time of the Op Art movement and that seminal exhibition, The Responsive Eye, presented at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1965 and organized by William C. Seitz, Rector could not help but be influenced by the hard-edge structures, dizzying lines, geometric forms and high key and high contrast colors that created optical and illusory effects challenging visual perception. She exhibited regularly in solo and group exhibitions with Atelier Chapman Kelly in Dallas until she moved to Sausalito in 1973 where she has lived and worked ever since. While in Sausalito, her painting practice expanded to explore new mediums, shapes, compositions and palettes, but always staying focused on non-objective abstraction.