Eva Hesse. Datebooks, 1964/65
Sunday, June 21, 1964 “Studio–To date have again done mainly drawings. Coming along. Sometimes I feel they’re good, often I get discouraged. Staying at studio gets a little easier + more pleasant. I usually take break + come home. Tom stays.”—Eva Hesse In 1964–65, Eva Hesse lived with her husband, sculptor Tom Doyle, in Kettwig-on-the-Ruhr, Germany, at the invitation of a European art collector. During this time, as she did throughout most of her life, Hesse kept diaries and made extensive notations in datebook calendars. These two datebooks, published for the first time as facsimile editions, are accompanied by a third volume that includes an essay on their significance in the artist’s career as well as full transcriptions and annotations. The 1964/65 datebooks impart astonishingly rich personal details about the artist’s life: whom she met and where she traveled, which books she read, and which films and exhibitions she saw and what impression they made on her. Hesse’s notations also reveal invaluable insights into the German art scene of the mid-1960s, her transition from a painter to a sculptor and her often conflicted artistic ambitions, the stresses of her marriage, and the difficulties of returning to Germany, the country that in 1938 she fled with her family to escape Nazi persecution.