Zaha Hadid (born 1950 in Baghdad, Iraq; died 2016 in Miami, USA).
One of a series of 79 drawings and paintings executed for the design of the Solomon R. Guggenheim’s exhibition of Russian Constructivist art, “The Great Utopia: The Russian and Soviet Avant-Garde” (1992). There are 32 ink drawings and 47 acrylic paintings, grouped thematically by installation. Hadid planned the design for the entire exhibition.
“Ms. Hadid originally planned a more ambitious parallel (eliminated for budget reasons). She hoped to rig up the rotunda with a stylized version of Tatlin’s Monument to the Third International, an unbuilt tower with a spiraling iron framework. Wright’s spiral [in the Guggenheim] and Tatlin’s held contemporary but not identical connotations. Tatlin’s spoke of modern industry and the historical forces pressing for worldwide revolution. Wright’s refers to nature. Coiling upward from the pod-shaped pool on the museum’s ground floor, Wright’s spiral sets forth the idea that art is an organic process… Ms. Hadid wants to counteract the strong temptation to see ‘The Great Utopia’ as a display of doomed hopes. For we ascend the spiral with mounting dread. We know how this story will end. The avant-garde will fail. Painters will be forced to paint tractors, architects to design neo-classical palaces. Workers exalted by the posters will be exploited by party bosses. Millions will die in the gulags.”
—Herbert Muschamp, “Architecture View; Three Shows in One at the Guggenheim,” The New York Times, October 18, 1992.