167 // MA-P / Research / Wassily Kandinsky
While looking at a Bauhaus catalogue, I came across a series of prints by Wassily Kandinsky depicting small and unique worlds within each of these prints. The series of twelve prints, in lithography, woodcut and etching, that Kandinsky drew in 1922 under the title “Kleine Welten” (“Small Worlds”) marks a high point in the period of his work at the Bauhaus in Weimar.
When Kandinsky decided to make the twelve prints which make up the “Kleine Welten” series he wrote a short introduction to the works. In this he stated that the prints fell into three groups – lithographs, woodcuts and etchings. Each group had been chosen as a result of its individual character and the character of each type of print had helped to form the outward nature of the creation of differing ‘small worlds’. In six of the prints these ‘small worlds’ were complete with just black lines or marks, but in the six others they needed the “sound” of other colours. By the title “Small Worlds” Kandinsky was suggesting that as the viewer enters into each abstract composition he becomes enclosed visually and mentally in an isolated individual environment conditioned by the forms and the sound of the colours, a continuing emphasis on the associations between music and visual art. The “Kleine Welten” prints are one of the most complete and developed statements of this period of Kandinsky’s art.