Heaven is a Line

Abstract Works from the Berman Museum Permanent Collection

Heaven is a Line: Abstract Works from the Berman Museum Permanent Collection explores spirituality as a lens through which to view non-objective art. In conversation with José Ortiz-Pagán’s Umbral, in the adjacent gallery, Heaven is a Line considers abstraction as a language for expressing experiences outside the bounds of the physical or those that offer boundless connectedness, inner peace, or liberation.

Many 20th-century artists were influenced by philosophies, religions, ideologies, and movements concerned with the spiritual. Abstraction, in its conception, abandoned artistic conventions for representing the observable world and offered freedom to pursue art that might provoke a regenerative effect on humanity. Modernist art critic Clive Bell coined the term “significant form” to describe formal elements (line, shape, color, etc.) acting together to stir aesthetic or physiological responses to artwork.

The works assembled here share geometric identity in circles and intersecting lines. Circles signify infinity, wholeness, and ceaseless repetition, whereas lines visually guide and inspire journeys. Here, you are invited to contemplate and meditate on abstract form as a vehicle for reflection.