Monday, April 4, 2011
Up until sometime in 1949, Kline's sketches for his paintings were rather small, measuring in inches. He drew on more than just small pads however, choosing to draw on what was on hand. Some of such were: napkins, the backs of bills, or menus. After a fated visit to one of his friends who was utilizing a Bell-Opticon to enlarge small sketches, Franz forever changed. He began drawing on canvas that measured in feet instead. This reflected in his works, as he began to paint increasingly larger scale.
Franz Kooning had to retire in the winter of 1961-62 due to a recurrent illness, which later claimed his life the following May. He was 51 when he passed.
Information from: Franz Kline Memorial Exhibition published by the Washington Gallery of Modern Art.
Image from: www.flickr.com from Nather Bowers' photostream
Willem de Kooning (born April 24, 1904) once started out as a "commercial" artist. He studied in night classes while apprenticing to other commercial artists. In 1926 he became one of many stowaways to travel to the United States, a year later finding himself in Manhattan. During his time here he was inspired by other artists of his time: Arshille Gorky, Franz Kline and, somewhat noticeable in his later work, Jackson Pollack.
His early influences were reflecting European and Mexican Art. However, it wasn't until the early 1930's when he began to explore Abstract Art and started to use simple geometric shapes to convey his voice on canvas. His most controversial art was his pieces of women in the 1950's. de Kooning began to paint exclusively of in later in his career, making abstract forms of the female body. His geometric shapes, painting abstract yet concrete at the same time. His women have ghastly appearances, which suggest sexuality, but at the same time is exploding with color and runaway lines that it can hardly stand for anything. Crowds were intrigued, but also furious at suggesting that women could ever be shown in such a manner.
(above) Seated Woman (1952),
Pencil, Pastel and Oil on two sheets of paper,
12 1/8 x 9 1/2"
Due to his diagnoses of Alzheimzer Disease in 1980, his work began few and far in between, being seen with less substance than his earlier work. As time drew on, de Kooning's work became less active, yet more lucrative at the same time, his earlier pieces selling for millions. He died March 19, 1997, leaving his works of Abstract Expressionism to the masses, to refer to it as how they wanted it to be.
"Whatever an artist's personal feelings are, as soon as an artist fills a certain area on the canvas or circumscribes it, he becomes historical. He acts from or upon other artists"-Willem de Kooning
Sources: 1. http://www.biography.com/articles/Willem-de-Kooning-9270057?part=2 2. http://www.willem-de-kooning.com/ 3. (Quote) http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/authors/w/willem_de_kooning.html Images: 1. (Saturday Night) http://kemperartmuseum.wustl.edu/collection/explore/artwork/847 Copyright: The Willem de Kooning Foundation/Artist Right Society (ARS), New York 2.(Seated Woman) http://moma.org/collection/browse_results.php?object_id=33413 Copyright: The Willem de Kooning Foundation/ Arist Right Society (ARS), New York
Sunday, April 3, 2011
Throughout the 1930’s Barnett Newman did a number of works that could be described as an expressionist style, but he eventually destroyed all of them. His first surviving artwork was made in 1945, three years prior to his first art exhibition. Up until this point Newman had studied Philosophy at the College of New York, and worked as a writer, critic, and exhibition organizer. Throughout the 1940’s Newman worked in a very surrealist style, characterized by multi-tonal vibrant monochromatic color separated by thin vertical lines he called “zips.” The zips are used as devices to divide the color, but rather than divide the canvas into separate large paintings, they actually lend unity and structure to the composition as a whole. Later in his life Newman used hard edged areas of flat color, which can be viewed as a source of inspiration for later minimalist works.
The large size of Newman’s paintings is very indicative of his art philosophy. For Newman, he wanted people to view the art and get a sense of the scale, and to also understand that there is a mystery and a metaphysical fact held within the painting. Newman stated with regards to this concept that he and his colleges “favor the simple expression of the complex thought. We are for the large shape because it has the impact of the unequivocal. We wish to reassert the picture plane. We are for flat forms because they destroy illusion and reveal truth.” He hoped that his paintings would give his viewers the feeling of their own totality, separateness, and individuality, but at the same time express their connection to all others.
"Barnett Newman." Absolute Astronomy. N.p., n.d. Web. 3 Apr 2011.
"Barnett Newman and Frank Stella; Art and the Sublime." The Free Library. N.p., 2008. Web. 3 Apr 2011.
"Chronology of the Artist’s Life." The Barnett Newman Foundation. N.p., 2005. Web. 3 Apr 2011.
Jackson Pollock was born on January 28, 1912 in Cody, Wyoming. He was the first of his colleagues to earn respect from the European art world by developing a technique that he called "pour painting," which is also known as drip painting.
His life first began in Wyoming, but soon was relocated West where they moved between California and Arizona for the next 16 years. Soon after his family moved once again, to Los Angeles where they finally set roots. Pollock soon joined the Manual Arts High School where he first pursued his passion of art. While there he was introduced to metaphysical and occult spirituality which would later come into play in his paintings.
However, In 1930 Pollock decided to move to New York to join his brother who studied under Thomas Hart Benton. For the next 8 years Pollock analyzed the work of Benton who revealed techniques as well as artists such as Albert Pinkham Ryder who strongly influenced him. Others influences include that of, Jose' Clemente Orozco, Joan Miro, and Pablo Picasso.
In 1937' Jackson was going trough treatment for alcoholism, and in 1938 was institutionalized for a nervous breakdown. Soon after his release his painting style became more abstract departing from his landscape style into his drip style. A few more years down the road he landed a job with the heris of the Guggenheim Museum, Peggy Guggenheim. He worked producing art for her gallery while getting paid 150$ a month.
In 45' Pollock married his wife Lee Krasner, who was also a painter. They moved to East Hampton where they lived on a farm with a garage that Jackson renovated into a studio. He would work outside with his canvas on the ground to be able to move around the painting to create a much more interactive approach. His studio allowed him to work in a more comfortable environment, allowing him to produce the vast amount of paintings that were show at different galleries between 1940 - 47'.
Pollock soon after began to spiral out of control. He became infamous mostly due to his dependency on alcohol. He also began an affair with a mistress who he would be with at the time of his death.
Although he died at an unstable part in his life, Pollock will always be remember by the foundation of art work he produced that led the way to such an influential movement in art. He laid the ground work for many artist to follow while gaining recognition as one of the first American artists to be famous in his time.
Friday, April 1, 2011