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Cybernetic Impulses and Serial Systems: The Art of Peter Roehr in Frankfurt am Main, 1963-1968

North, Meredith (2020) Cybernetic Impulses and Serial Systems: The Art of Peter Roehr in Frankfurt am Main, 1963-1968. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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Peter Roehr’s artistic career lasted only 5 years, but in that short time he produced hundreds of works, which all followed a program that consisted of identical elements placed in serial, repetitious forms. The bulk of these works were termed “Montages,” and were produced between 1963 and 1967. When Roehr and Paul Maenz debuted the exhibition Serielle Formationen at the Frankfurt University’s Studio Galerie in the early summer of 1967, artistic concepts were rapidly changing and the show sought to examine a prevailing tendency in art that was directly connected to the present moment: the serial, repeated element in art. Seriality ran as a leitmotif through the exhibition, but most importantly, displayed Roehr’s move into a conceptual basis for his works. My own contribution in this dissertation recognizes Roehr’s project of seriality within a cybernetic and systems orientation emerging during his time. His own acknowledgement of parallels to cybernetics came as early as 1963; yet as I argue, this under-examined aspect of Roehr’s artistic project can be found throughout his ideas and work. While I more fully develop a discussion of cybernetics in his process and methods of production, my attention highlights the critical recognition Roehr’s art paid to society and culture of the 1960s. As I have outlined throughout this dissertation, these networked concepts adapted to larger movements, styles, and ideas such as Concrete Art, Pop art, Minimalism, and Concept Art, but were advanced by Roehr’s own developing artistic position.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairMcCloskey, Barbarabarbara.mccloskey@pitt.eduBMCC
Committee MemberEllenbogen, Joshuajme23@pitt.eduJME23
Committee MemberSmith, Terrytes2@pitt.eduTES2
Committee MemberHalle,
Date: 16 September 2020
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 15 July 2020
Approval Date: 16 September 2020
Submission Date: 2 September 2020
Access Restriction: 2 year -- Restrict access to University of Pittsburgh for a period of 2 years.
Number of Pages: 274
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > History of Art and Architecture
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Art 1960s, Serial Art, Cybernetics, Systems Art, Concept Art, German Art, Frankfurt am Main
Date Deposited: 16 Sep 2020 14:39
Last Modified: 16 Sep 2022 05:15


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