Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Mel Bochner


Mel Bochner (born 1940) is an American conceptual artist. Mr. Bochner received his BFA in 1962 and honorary Doctor of Fine Arts in 2005 from the School of Art at Carnegie Mellon University. He lives in New York City.

Starting in the 1960s, he evolved several of the exhibition strategies now taken for granted, including using the walls of the gallery as the subject of the work and using photo documentation of ephemeral and performance works. As Richard Kalina wrote in Art in America in 1996, Bochner was one of the earliest proponents, along with Joseph Kosuth and Bruce Nauman, of photo-documentation work in which the artist “created not so much a sculpture as a two-dimensional work about sculpture.”

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Geoff Bunn


Geoff Bunn (born 1963) is a British artist who can be considered as a latter day conceptualist. Primarily "just a painter", during the 1990's Bunn developed the idea of the random location of a set of artworks in the environment with the gradual release of clues to allow people to discover the nature and whereabouts of the pieces.

A further major element, often misunderstood, of Bunn's work is his mockery of the contemporary art world. For instance, he argues that "art is no longer about the object, the idea or about good art or bad art, but (solely) about the publicity surrounding the artist". And to this end he pokes fun at the art world with a raft of dissembling publicity.

In this respect Bunn follows a quizzically humorous tradition in art which reaches from William Hogarth through Marcel Duchamp to the Stuckists of today.

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Monday, December 22, 2008

Victor Vasarely

Victor Vasarely (Vásárhelyi Győző) (9 April 1906[1], Pécs - 15 March 1997, Paris) was a Hungarian French artist often acclaimed as the father of Op-art. Working as a graphic artist in the 1930s he created what is considered the first Op-art piece — Zebra, consisting of curving black and white stripes, indicating the direction his work would take. Over the next two decades, Vasarely developed his style of geometric abstract art. His work won his international renown and he received 4 prestigious prizes. He died in Paris in 1997.


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Saturday, December 20, 2008

Richard Estes


Richard Estes (born May 14, 1932 in Kewanee, Illinois) is an American painter who is best known for his photorealistic paintings. The paintings generally consist of reflective, clean, and inanimate city and geometric landscapes. He is regarded as one of the founders of the international photo-realist movement of the late 1960s.

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Friday, December 19, 2008

Audrey Flack

Audrey Flack (b. 1931 in New York) is an American photorealist painter, printmaker, and sculptor.

Flack studied fine arts in New York from 1948 to 1953. Her early work was abstract; one such painting paid tribute to Franz Kline. But gradually, Flack became a New Realist and finally a photorealist, in reaction to the abstract art movement. She later claimed she found the photorealist movement too restricting, and now gains much of her inspiration from baroque art.

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Richard Hamilton

Richard Hamilton (born February 24, 1922) is an English painter and collage artist. His 1956 collage titled Just What Is It that Makes Today's Homes So Different, So Appealing?, produced for the This Is Tomorrow exhibition of the Independent Group in London, is considered by critics and historians to be one of the first works of Pop Art.

The Tate Gallery now has a comprehensive collection of Hamilton's work from across his career.


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Thursday, December 18, 2008

David Hockney


David Hockney, CH, RA, (born 9 July 1937) is an English artist, based in Yorkshire, United Kingdom, although he also maintains a base in London. An important contributor to the Pop art movement of the 1960s, he is considered one of the most influential British artists of the twentieth century.


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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Jasper Johns

Jasper Johns (born May 15, 1930 in Augusta, Georgia) is an American contemporary artist who primarily works in painting and printmaking.

He is best known for his painting Flag (1954-55), which he painted after having a dream of the American flag. His work is often described as a Neo-Dadaist, as opposed to pop art, even though his subject matter often includes images and objects from popular culture. However, many compilations on pop art include Jasper Johns as a pop artist because of his artistic use of classical iconography.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Andy Warhol

Andrew Warhola (August 6, 1928 – February 22, 1987), more commonly known as Andy Warhol, was an American artist and a figure in the movement known as pop art. After a successful career as a commercial illustrator, Warhol became famous worldwide for his work as a painter, avant-garde filmmaker, record producer, author, and public figure known for his membership in wildly diverse social circles that included bohemian street people, distinguished intellectuals, Hollywood celebrities and wealthy aristocrats.

Warhol has been the subject of numerous retrospective exhibitions, books, and feature and documentary films since his death in 1987.

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Frank Helmut Auerbach


Frank Helmut Auerbach (born April 29, 1931) is a German-born British painter. His work typically portrays either one of a small group of mainly female models, or scenes around London, especially Camden Town.

Auerbach studied art at St Martin's School of Art in London and later at the Royal College of Art, but was more strongly influenced by lessons with David Bomberg at Borough Polytechnic, and especially so by Bomberg's exploratory attitude.

Recurring subjects in his Camden landscapes are Mornington Crescent and the adjacent Art Deco former Carreras cigarette factory and nearby Camden Palace dance club (originally a music hall); the most pastoral setting is nearby Primrose Hill.

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Monday, December 15, 2008

Kenneth Noland

Kenneth Noland (born April 10, 1924) is an American abstract painter. He is identified today as one of the best-known contemporary American Color field painters, although in the 1950s he was thought of as an abstract expressionist and in the early 1960s he was thought of as a minimalist painter.

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Robert Mangold


Robert Mangold (born October 12, 1937 in North Tonawanda, New York) is an American minimalist artist. In 1965, the Jewish Museum in New York held the first major exhibition of what was called Minimal art and included Robert Mangold. In 1971, he had his first solo museum exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum. He has been featured in the Whitney Biennial four times, in 1979, 1983, 1985, and 2004.

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Lucio Fontana

Lucio Fontana (19 February 1899 – 7 September 1968) was a painter and sculptor born in Rosario, Argentina, the son of an Italian father and an Argentine mother. He was mostly known as the founder of Spatialism and his ties to Arte Povera.

Fontana's works can be found in the permanent collections of more than one hundred museums around the world.

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Sunday, December 14, 2008

Christo and Jeanne-Claude

Christo (born as Christo Vladimirov Javacheff, Bulgarian: Христо Явашев) and Jeanne-Claude (born as Jeanne-Claude Denat de Guillebon) are a married couple who create environmental installation art. Their works include the wrapping of the Reichstag in Berlin and the Pont Neuf bridge in Paris, the 24-mile-long curtain called Running Fence in Marin and Sonoma counties in California, and most recently The Gates in New York City's Central Park.

Although their work is visually impressive and often controversial as a result of its scale, the artists have repeatedly denied that their projects contain any deeper meaning than their immediate aesthetic. The purpose of their art, they contend, is simply to make the world a "more beautiful place" or to create new ways of seeing familiar landscapes.

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Dan Christensen

Dan Christensen (October 6 1942, January 20 2007) was an American abstract painter, he is best known for paintings that relate to Lyrical Abstraction, Color field painting and Abstract expressionism. His early work from 1965-1966 was related to Minimalism.

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Saturday, December 13, 2008

Jean-Michel Basquiat


Jean-Michel Basquiat (December 22, 1960 – August 12, 1988) was an American artist. He gained popularity first as a graffiti artist in New York City, and then as a successful 1980s-era Neo-expressionist artist.

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Anselm Kiefer


Anselm Kiefer (born March 8, 1945, Donaueschingen) is a German painter and sculptor. He studied with Joseph Beuys during the 1970s. His works incorporate materials like straw, ash, clay, lead, and shellac.

His works are characterised by a dull/musty, nearly depressive, destructive style and are often done in large scale formats. It is also characteristic of his work to find signatures and/or names of humans, legendary figures or places particularly pregnant with history in nearly all of his paintings. He is often gets him linked with a style called "New Symbolism."

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Friday, December 12, 2008

Nadir Afonso


Nadir Afonso, OSE (1920, Portugal) is a geometric abstractionist painter. Trained in architecture, which he practiced early in his career with Le Corbusier and Oscar Niemeyer, Afonso later studied painting in Paris and became one of the pioneers in Kinetic art, working alongside Fernand Léger, Auguste Herbin, and André Bloc.

As a theorist of his own geometry-based aesthetics, published in several books, Nadir Afonso defends that art is purely objective and ruled by laws that treat art not as an act of imagination but of observation, perception, and form manipulation.

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Pierre Alechinsky

Pierre Alechinsky (October 19, 1927) is a Belgian artist. In 1945 he discovered the work of Henri Michaux and Jean Dubuffet and developed a friendship with the art critic Jacques Putman. In 1949 he joined Christian Dotremont, Karel Appel and Asger Jorn to form the art group Cobra. He participated both with the Cobra exhibitions and went to Paris to study engraving with Stanley William Hayter in 1951.

His paintings are related to Tachisme, Abstract expressionism, and Lyrical Abstraction.


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Helen Frankenthaler

Helen Frankenthaler (born December 12, 1928) is an American post-painterly abstraction artist. Born in New York City, she was influenced by Jackson Pollock's paintings and by Clement Greenberg. She later married fellow artist Robert Motherwell.

Her career was launched in 1952 with the exhibition of 'Mountains and Sea'. This painting is large - measuring seven feet by ten feet - and has the effect of a watercolor, though it is painted in oils. In it, she used the technique of painting directly on to an unprepared canvas so that the material absorbs the colors. She heavily diluted the oil paint with turpentine or kerosene so that the color would soak into the canvas. This technique, known as "soak stain" was adopted by other artists (notably Morris Louis and Kenneth Noland) and launched the second generation of the Color Field school of painting. This method would leave the canvas with a halo effect around each area to which the paint was applied.


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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Morris Louis

Morris Louis (Morris Louis Bernstein) (November 28, 1912 - September 7, 1962) was an American Abstract Expressionist - one of the many such painters to emerge in the 1950s. Louis destroyed many of his paintings between 1955 and 1957. In 1986 there was an important retrospective exhibition of his later works at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City.

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Mark Rothko


Mark Rothko, born Marcus Rothkowitz (Latvian: Marks Rotko; September 25, 1903–February 25, 1970), was a Latvian-born American painter and printmaker. He is classified as an abstract expressionist, although he himself rejected this label, and even resisted the classification as an "abstract painter".

"I am not an abstract painter. I am not interested in the relationship between form and color. The only thing I care about is the expression of man's basic emotions: tragedy, ecstasy, destiny."

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Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Mario Merz

Mario Merz (January 1, 1925 – 9 November 2003) was an Italian artist who was a part of the Art Povera movement.

Born in Milan, Merz started drawing during World War II, when he was imprisoned for his activities with an antifascist group. He soon rejected Abstract Expressionism’s subjectivity in favor of opening art to exterior space and in the 1960s, Merz’s work with energy, light and matter placed him in the movement that Germano Celant named Arte Povera, which, together with Futurism, remains one of the most influential movements of Italian art in the 20th century.

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Tuesday, December 9, 2008

August Natterer


August Natterer (1868 - 1933), also known as Neter, was a schizophrenic German outsider artist.

As a young man, Natterer studied engineering, got married, travelled widely, and had a successful career as an electrician but he was suddenly stricken with delusions and anxiety attacks. On April Fool's Day, 1907 he had a pivotal hallucination of the Last Judgment during which "10,000 images flashed by in half an hour." This ordeal led to a suicide attempt and committal to the first of what would be several mental asylums occupied during the remaining twenty-six years of his life.

The vision also inspired an intense production of drawings, all documenting images and ideas seen in the vision. Because of the intense and psychotic imagery, Netterer's work is more often studied scientifically than artistically. He died in 1933 in an asylum near Rottweil.

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Madge Gill

Madge Gill (1882 – 1961), born Maude Ethel Eades, was an English artist.

Born an illegitimate child in East Ham, Essex, (now Greater London), she spent much of her early years in seclusion and was placed in an orphanage at the age of 9. At the age of 25, she married her cousin, Thomas Edwin Gill, a stockbroker. Together they had three sons with their second, Reginald, dying of the Spanish flu. The following year she gave birth to a stillborn baby girl and almost died herself, contracting a serious illness that left her bedridden for several months and blind in her left eye.

After recovering from her illness, she took a sudden and passionate interest in drawing, creating thousands of mediumistic works over the following 40 years, most done with ink in black and white. The works came in all sizes, from postcard-sized to huge sheets of fabric, some over 30 feet (9.1 m) long. She claimed to be guided by a spirit she called "Myrninerest" (my inner rest) and often signed her works in this name. The figure of a young woman in intricate dress appeared thousands of times in her work, and is often thought to be a representation of herself or her lost daughter.

Gill rarely exhibited her work and never sold any pieces out of fear of angering "Myrninerest." After her first son, Bob, died in 1958 she started drinking heavily and stopped drawing. Following her death in 1961, thousands of drawings were discovered in her home; the collection is currently owned by the London Borough of Newham which has no plans to display them.


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Robert Motherwell

Robert Motherwell (January 24, 1915 – July 16, 1991) was an American abstract expressionist painter and printmaker. He was one of the youngest of the New York School (a phrase he coined), which also included Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning.

Motherwell completed one year of a philosophy Ph.D. at Harvard before shifting fields to art and art history. This rigorous background in rhetoric would serve him and the abstract expressionists well, as he was able to tour the country giving speeches that articulated to the public what it was that he and his friends were doing in New York. Without his tireless devotion to communication (in addition to his prolific painting), well-known abstract expressionists like Rothko, who was extremely shy and rarely left his studio, might not have made it into the public eye.

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Monday, December 8, 2008

Hans Hofmann


Hans Hofmann (March 21, 1880 – February 17, 1966) was a German abstract expressionist painter. He was born in Weißenburg, Bavaria on March 21, 1880 the son of Theodor and Franziska Hofmann. In 1932 he immigrated to the United States, where he resided until the end of his life.

Hofmann's work is distinguished by "a rigorous concern with pictorial structure, spatial illusion, and color relationships." Hofmann believed that abstract art was a way to get at what was really important. He famously stated that "the ability to simplify means to eliminate the unnecessary so that the necessary may speak."

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Willem de Kooning

Willem de Kooning (April 24, 1904 – March 19, 1997) was an abstract expressionist artist, born in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

In the post-World War II era, de Kooning painted in a style that came to be referred to variously as Abstract expressionism, Action painting, and the New York School.

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Sunday, December 7, 2008

Bernard Buffet

Bernard Buffet (July 10, 1928 – October 4, 1999) was a French expressionist painter and Member of the Anti-Abstract Art Group "L 'homme Témoin".

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John Duncan Fergusson

John Duncan Fergusson (1874–1961) was a Scottish artist, regarded as one of the major artists of the Scottish Colourists school of painting.

While studying at the Louvre in Paris, Fergusson was impressed by the impressionist paintings at the Salle Caillebotte and these were an important influence on his developing style. Later he would also be influenced by Fauvism and the fauvist principles would become a strong feature of his art. Andre Dunoyer de Segonzac wrote in his foreword to Fergusson's memorial exhibition of 1961: "His art is a deep and pure expression of his immense love of life. Endowed with a rare plastic feeling, almost sculptural in its quality. He joined with it an exceptional sense of colour, outspoken, ringing colours, rich and splendid in their very substance."

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Saturday, December 6, 2008

Francis Cadell


Francis Campbell Boileau Cadell (1883–1937) was a Scottish painter associated with the Scottish Colourists. He painted landscapes, interiors, still life and figures in both oil and watercolour, but he is particularly noted for his portraits, depicting his subject with vibrant waves of colour.


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Friday, December 5, 2008

Paul Klee


Paul Klee (18 December 1879 – 29 June 1940) was a Swiss painter of German nationality. His highly individual style was influenced by many different art trends, including Expressionism, Cubism, and Surrealism.

Klee was a natural draftsman who experimented with and eventually mastered color theory, and wrote extensively about it. His works reflect his dry humor and his sometimes child-like perspective, his personal moods and beliefs, and his musicality.

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Thursday, December 4, 2008

Max Beckmann

Max Beckmann (February 12, 1884 – December 28, 1950) was a German painter, draftsman, printmaker, sculptor, and writer. Although he is usually classified as an Expressionist artist, he rejected both the term and the movement. In the 1920s he was associated with the New Objectivity (Neue Sachlichkeit), an outgrowth of Expressionism that opposed its introverted emotionalism.

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Wednesday, December 3, 2008

James Whistler

James Abbott McNeill Whistler (14 July 1834 – 17 July 1903) was an American-born, British-based painter and etcher. Averse to sentimentality in painting, he was a leading proponent of the credo "art for art's sake". He took to signing his paintings with a stylized butterfly, possessing a long stinger for a tail. The symbol was apt, for Whistler's art was characterized by a subtle delicacy, in contrast to his combative public persona. Finding a parallel between painting and music, Whistler titled many of his works 'harmonies' and 'arrangements'.


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Marc Chagall


Marc Chagall (7 July 1887 – 28 March 1985) was a Belarussian/French painter of Russian-Jewish origin who was born in Belarus, then part of the Russian Empire. Among the celebrated painters of the 20th century, he is associated with the modern movements after Impressionism.

Chagall's works fit into several modern art categories. He took part in the movements of the Paris art world which preceded World War I and was thus involved with avant-garde currents. However, his work always found itself on the margins of these movements and emerging trends, including Cubism and Fauvism. He was closely associated with the Paris School and its exponents, including Amedeo Modigliani.
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Pablo Picasso


Pablo Ruiz Picasso (25 October 1881 – 8 April 1973), often referred to simply as Picasso, was a Spanish painter and sculptor. One of the most recognized figures in 20th century art, he is best known as the co-founder, along with Georges Braque, of Cubism.

Picasso's work is often categorized into periods. While the names of many of his later periods are debated, the most commonly accepted periods in his work are the Blue Period (1901–1904), the Rose Period (1905–1907), the African-influenced Period (1908–1909), Analytic Cubism (1909–1912), and Synthetic Cubism (1912–1919).

Picasso's final works were a mixture of styles, his means of expression in constant flux until the end of his life. Devoting his full energies to his work, Picasso became more daring, his works more colourful and expressive, and from 1968 through 1971 he produced a torrent of paintings and hundreds of copperplate etchings.

At the time these works were dismissed by most as pornographic fantasies of an impotent old man or the slapdash works of an artist who was past his prime. One long time admirer, Douglas Cooper, called them "the incoherent scribblings of a frenetic old man".

Only later, after Picasso's death, when the rest of the art world had moved on from Abstract Expressionism, did the critical community come to see that Picasso had already discovered Neo-Expressionism and was, as so often before, ahead of his time.


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Chaïm Soutine


Chaïm Soutine (1893 – August 9, 1943) was an expressionist painter from Belarus. For a time, he and his friends lived at La Ruche, a residence for struggling artists in Montparnasse, where he became friends with Amedeo Modigliani.

Soutine produced the majority of his works from 1920 to 1929. He seldom showed his works, but he did take part in the exhibition of Independent Art held in 1937 in Paris. Soon thereafter France was invaded by German troops. As a Jew, Soutine had to escape from the French capital and hide in order to avoid arrest by the Gestapo. He moved from one place to another and was sometimes forced to seek shelter in forests, sleeping outdoors. Suffering from a stomach ulcer and bleeding badly, he left a safe hiding place for Paris in order to undergo emergency surgery, which failed to save his life. On August 9, 1943, Chaim Soutine died of a perforated ulcer.


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Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Jean Arp

Jean Arp (16 September 1886 – 7 June 1966) was a German-French sculptor, painter, poet and abstract artist.

Arp was a founding member of the Dada movement in Zürich in 1916. In 1920, as Hans Arp, along with Max Ernst, and the social activist Alfred Grünwald, he set up the Cologne Dada group. However, in 1925 his work also appeared in the first exhibition of the Surrealist group at the Galerie Pierre in Paris. In 1931, he broke with the Surrealism movement.

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Monday, December 1, 2008

Carlo Carrà


Carlo Carrà (February 11, 1881—April 13, 1966) was an Italian painter, a leading figure of the Futurist movement that flourished in Italy during the beginning of the 20th century. In addition to his many paintings, he wrote a number of books concerning art.

He is best known for his 1911 futurist work, The Funeral of the Anarchist Galli.

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Sunday, November 30, 2008

Umberto Boccioni

Umberto Boccioni (October 19, 1882 – August 17, 1916) was a painter and a sculptor. He was born in Reggio Calabria, Italy. Like other Futurists, his work centered on the portrayal of movement, speed and technology.

Boccioni was the main theorist of the Futurist movement and in 1914, he published Pittura e scultura futuriste explaining the aesthetics of the group: “While the impressionists make a table to give one particular moment and subordinate the life of the table to its resemblance to this moment, we synthesize every moment (time, place, form, color-tone) and thus build the table.”

Mobilized in the first world war, Boccioni was assigned at an artillery regiment at Sorte, near Verona. On 16 August 1916, Boccioni was thrown from his horse during a cavalry training exercise and was trampled. He died the following day, age thirty-four.

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Saturday, November 29, 2008

Stanton MacDonald-Wright

Stanton MacDonald-Wright (July 8, 1890 – August 22, 1973), was a U.S. abstract painter and co-founder of the Synchromist movement in 1913.

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Ernst Kirchner


Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (May 6, 1880 – June 15, 1938) was a German expressionist painter and printmaker and one of the founders of the artists group Die Brücke or "The Bridge", a key group leading to the foundation of Expressionism in 20th century art. He volunteered for army service in the First World War, but soon suffered a breakdown and was discharged. In 1933, his work was branded as "degenerate" by the Nazis and in 1937 over 600 of his works were sold or destroyed. In 1938 he committed suicide.

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Friday, November 28, 2008

Emil Nolde

Emil Nolde (7 August 1867 – 13 April 1956) was a German painter and printmaker. He was one of the first Expressionists, a member of Die Brücke, and is considered to be one of the great watercolour painters of the 20th century.

Nolde is known for his vigorous brushwork and expressive choice of colors. Golden yellows and deep reds appear frequently in his work, giving a luminous quality to otherwise somber tones. His watercolors include vivid, brooding storm-scapes and brilliant florals - his intense preoccupation with the subject of flowers reflect his continuing interest in the art of Vincent Van Gogh.


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Maurice Vlaminck

Maurice de Vlaminck (April 4, 1876 – October 11, 1958) was a French painter. Along with André Derain and Henri Matisse he is considered one of the principal figures in the Fauve movement, a group of modern artists who from 1904 to 1908 were united in their use of intense color.

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Thursday, November 27, 2008

Gustav Klimt


Gustav Klimt (July 14, 1862 – February 6, 1918) was an Austrian Symbolist painter and one of the most prominent members of the Vienna Art Nouveau (Vienna Secession) movement. His major works include paintings, murals, sketches, and other art objects, many of which are on display in the Vienna Secession gallery. Klimt's primary subject was the female body and his works are marked by a frank eroticism.

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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Pierre Bonnard


Pierre Bonnard (3 October 1867 – 23 January 1947) was a French painter and printmaker, a founding member of Nabism; an art movement committed to creating work of symbolic and spiritual nature. Other Nabis include Édouard Vuillard and Maurice Denis.

Bonnard is known for his intense use of color. His often complex compositions — typically of sunlit interiors of rooms and gardens populated with friends and family members — are both narrative and autobiographical. Bonnard did not paint from life but rather drew his subject—sometimes photographing it as well—and made notes on the colors. He then painted the canvas in his studio from his notes.

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Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Henri Rousseau


Henri Julien Félix Rousseau (May 21, 1844 – September 2, 1910) was a French Post-Impressionist painter in the Naive or Primitive manner. He is also known as Le Douanier (the customs officer) after his place of employment. Ridiculed during his life, he came to be recognized as a self-taught genius whose works are of high artistic quality.

His best known paintings depict jungle scenes, even though he never left France or saw a jungle. His inspiration came from illustrated books and the botanical gardens in Paris, as well as tableaux of "taxidermified" wild animals. To the critic Arsène Alexandre, he described his frequent visits to the Jardin des Plantes: "When I go into the glass houses and I see the strange plants of exotic lands, it seems to me that I enter into a dream."

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Georges Braque


Georges Braque (13 May 1882 – 31 August 1963) was a major 20th century French painter and sculptor who, along with Picasso, developed the art movement known as Cubism.

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Monday, November 24, 2008

Wassily Kandinsky


Wassily Kandinsky (16 December 1866 – 13 December 1944) was a Russian painter, printmaker and art theorist. One of the most famous 20th-century artists, he is credited with painting the first modern abstract works.

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Walter Gropius

Walter Adolph Georg Gropius (18 May 1883 – 5 July 1969) was a German architect and founder of Bauhaus. Along with Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Le Corbusier, he is widely regarded as one of the pioneering masters of "modern" architecture.

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Sunday, November 23, 2008

Suzanne Valadon


Suzanne Valadon (23 September 1865 – 7 April 1938) was a French painter. In 1894 Valadon was the first woman painter admitted to the Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts.

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Sol LeWitt


Sol LeWitt (9 September 1928 - 8 April 2007) was an American artist linked to various movements including conceptual art and minimalism. His media were predominantly painting, drawing, and sculpture.

Sol LeWitt’s frequent use of open, modular structures originate from the cube, a form that influenced the artist’s thinking from the time that he first became an artist. Sol LeWitt: Structures includes early Wall Structures and three Serial Projects from the 1960s; four Incomplete Open Cubes from the 1970s; numerous painted white wood pieces from the 1980s: Hexagon, Form Derived from a Cube, Structure with Three Towers, among others as well as Maquettes for Concrete Block Structures from the late 1990s.

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Saturday, November 22, 2008

Salvador Dali


Salvador Domingo Felipe Jacinto Dalí i Domènech (11 May 1904 – 23 January 1989), was a Spanish surrealist painter born in Figueres, Catalonia, Spain. Dalí was a skilled draftsman, best known for the striking and bizarre images in his surrealist work. His painterly skills are often attributed to the influence of Renaissance masters. His best known work, 'The Persistence of Memory', was completed in 1931.

Salvador Dalí's artistic repertoire also included film, sculpture, and photography. He collaborated with Walt Disney on the Academy Award-nominated short cartoon Destino, which was released posthumously in 2003. He also collaborated with Alfred Hitchcock on Hitchcock's film Spellbound.

Widely considered to be greatly imaginative, Dalí had an affinity for doing unusual things to draw attention to himself. This sometimes irked those who loved his art as much as it annoyed his critics, since his eccentric manner sometimes drew more public attention than his artwork. The purposefully-sought notoriety led to broad public recognition and many purchases of his works by people from all walks of life.


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René Magritte


René François Ghislain Magritte (21 November 1898 – 15 August 1967) was a Belgian Surrealist artist. He became well known for a number of witty and amusing images.

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Piet Mondrian

Pieter Cornelis (Piet) Mondriaan, after 1912 Mondrian, (b. Amersfoort, Netherlands, 7 March 1872 — d. New York City, 1 February 1944) was a Dutch painter.

He was an important contributor to the De Stijl art movement and group, which was founded by Theo van Doesburg. He evolved a non-representational form which he termed Neo-Plasticism. This consisted of a grid of vertical and horizontal black lines and the use of the three primary colours.

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Friday, November 21, 2008

Pierre-Auguste Renoir


Pierre-Auguste Renoir (25 February 1841–3 December 1919) was a French artist who was a leading painter in the development of the Impressionist style. As a celebrator of beauty, and especially feminine sensuality, it has been said that "Renoir is the final representative of a tradition which runs directly from Rubens to Watteau".

Renoir's paintings are notable for their vibrant light and saturated color, most often focusing on people in intimate and candid compositions. The female nude was one of his primary subjects. In characteristic Impressionist style, Renoir suggested the details of a scene through freely brushed touches of color, so that his figures softly fuse with one another and their surroundings.

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Paul Nash


Paul Nash, (11 May 1889 – 11 July 1946) was an English war artist.

At the outbreak of World War I, Nash enlisted in the Artists' Rifles and was sent to the Western Front in February 1917 as a second lieutenant in the Hampshire Regiment. A few days before the Ypres offensive he fell into a trench. He broke a rib and was invalided home. While recuperating in London, Nash worked from his front-line sketches to produce a series of drawings of the war. This work, which shows the influence of Blast and the Vorticist movement, was well-received when exhibited later that year at the Goupil Gallery.

As a result of this exhibition, Charles Masterman, head of the government's War Propaganda Bureau (WPB) recruited Nash as an official war artist.

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Thursday, November 20, 2008

Paul Gaugin

Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin (7 June 1848 – 8 May 1903) was a leading Post-Impressionist painter.

Gaugin's bold experimentation with coloring led directly to the Synthetist style of modern art while his expression of the inherent meaning of the subjects in his paintings, paved the way to Primitivism and the return to the pastoral. He was also an influential exponent of wood engraving and woodcuts as art forms.

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Paul Cézanne


Paul Cézanne (19 January 1839 – 22 October 1906) was a French artist and Post-Impressionist painter whose work laid the foundations of the transition from the 19th century conception of artistic endeavour to a new and radically different world of art in the 20th century.

Cézanne can be said to form the bridge between late 19th century Impressionism and the early 20th century's new line of artistic enquiry, Cubism. The line attributed to both Henri Matisse and Picasso that Cézanne "is the father of us all" cannot be dismissed.

Cézanne's work demonstrates a mastery of design, colour, composition and draftsmanship. His often repetitive, sensitive and exploratory brushstrokes are highly characteristic and clearly recognisable. He used planes of colour and small brushstrokes that build up to form complex fields, at once both a direct expression of the sensations of the observing eye and an abstraction from observed nature. The paintings convey Cézanne's intense study of his subjects, a searching gaze and a dogged struggle to deal with the complexity of human visual perception.


Cezanne

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Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Lucian Freud

Lucian Michael Freud, OM, CH (born 8 December 1922) is a British painter. Freud was born in Berlin, Germany in 1922, son of Jewish parents Ernst Ludwig Freud, an architect, and Lucie née Brasch. He is the grandson of Sigmund Freud and brother of writer and politician Clement Raphael Freud and of Stephan Gabriel Freud.

Freud and his family moved to the U.K. in 1933 to escape the rise of Nazism, and gained British citizenship in 1939. During this period he attended Dartington Hall school in Totnes, Devon, and later Bryanston School.

Freud

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Jean Metzinger

Jean Metzinger (24 June 1883 – 3 November 1956) was a French painter. Initially he was influenced by Fauvism and Impressionism, but from 1908 he was associated with Cubism. Metzinger was a member of the Section d'Or group of artists. Certain pieces such as At the Cycle-Race track suggest speed and movement, ideas which are linked to the futurist movement.

Together with Albert Gleizes, Metzinger created the first major treatise on Cubism, 'Du Cubisme', in 1912. In the latter stages of his career, he moved away from cubism towards realism, while still retaining elements of cubist style.

Metzinger

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Francis Bacon


Francis Bacon (28 October 1909 – 28 April 1992) was an Irish figurative painter. He was a collateral descendant of the Elizabethan philosopher Francis Bacon. His artwork is known for its bold, austere, and often grotesque or nightmarish imagery.

Bacon

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Gilbert and George

Gilbert and George: Gilbert Prousch (or Proesch) (born in San Martin (San Martino), Italy, 11 September 1943) and George Passmore (born in Devon, England 8 January 1942), better known as Gilbert & George, are artists. They have worked almost exclusively as a pair.

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Francis Picabia


Francis-Marie Martinez Picabia (28 January 1879 - 30 November 1953) was a painter and poet. A large amount of his work involves the mechanical representation of people.

Picabia

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Franz Marc


Franz Marc (8 February 1880 – 4 March 1916) was one of the principal painters and printmakers of the German Expressionist movement.

Most of Marc's mature work portrays animals, usually in natural settings. His work is characterized by bright primary color, an almost cubist portrayal of animals, stark simplicity and a profound sense of emotion, which garnered notice in influential circles even in his own time.

Franz Marc's best known painting is probably Tierschicksale (also known as Animal Destinies or Fate of the Animals) completed in 1913, which hangs in the Basel Kunstmuseum in Basel.

Marc made some sixty prints, in woodcut and lithography.

In October 1998, several of Marc's paintings garnered record prices at Christie's art auction house in London, including Rote Rehe I (Red Deer I), which sold for £3.30m. This record was exceeded in October 1999, when Der Wasserfall (The Waterfall) was sold by Sotheby's in London to a private collector for £5.06m. This price set a record for both Franz Marc's work, and 20th century German painting.

Marc

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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Mel Bochner


Mel Bochner (born 1940) is an American conceptual artist. Mr. Bochner received his BFA in 1962 and honorary Doctor of Fine Arts in 2005 from the School of Art at Carnegie Mellon University. He lives in New York City.

Starting in the 1960s, he evolved several of the exhibition strategies now taken for granted, including using the walls of the gallery as the subject of the work and using photo documentation of ephemeral and performance works. As Richard Kalina wrote in Art in America in 1996, Bochner was one of the earliest proponents, along with Joseph Kosuth and Bruce Nauman, of photo-documentation work in which the artist “created not so much a sculpture as a two-dimensional work about sculpture.”

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Fred Yates

Fred Yates (1922 to 2008) was an English painter who painted very much in the style of L S Lowry. Although, as Yates always and rightly maintained, his work was significantly different from that of Lowry the similarities are remarkable.

Yates spent much of his painting life in Cornwall and France.

Yates

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Ben Nicholson

Benjamin Lauder Nicholson OM, (10 April 1894 – 6 February 1982), known as Ben Nicholson, was an English abstract painter.

Nicholson

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Art and Language

Art & Language is a group of conceptual artists who have produced collaborative work under this name since the late 1960s.

The name Art & Language was first used in 1968 by the British artists Terry Atkinson, David Bainbridge, Michael Baldwin and Harold Hurrell, who had been collaborating on works since around 1966, and who were at that time teaching art in Coventry. Their early work, as well as their journal Art-Language which first appeared in 1969, is regarded as an important influence on much conceptual art both in the United Kingdom and in the United States.



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Geoff Bunn


Geoff Bunn (born 1963) is a British artist who can be considered as a latter day conceptualist. Primarily "just a painter", during the 1990's Bunn developed the idea of the random location of a set of artworks in the environment with the gradual release of clues to allow people to discover the nature and whereabouts of the pieces.

A further major element, often misunderstood, of Bunn's work is his mockery of the contemporary art world. For instance, he argues that "art is no longer about the object, the idea or about good art or bad art, but (solely) about the publicity surrounding the artist". And to this end he pokes fun at the art world with a raft of dissembling publicity.

In this respect Bunn follows a quizzically humorous tradition in art which reaches from William Hogarth through Marcel Duchamp to the Stuckists of today.

Bunn

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George Grosz

George Grosz (26 July 1893 – 6 July 1959) was a prominent member of the Berlin Dada and New Objectivity group, known especially for his savagely caricatural drawings of Berlin life in the 1920s.

Grosz

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Fernand Léger


Joseph Fernand Henri Léger (4 February 1881 – 17 August 1955) was a French painter, sculptor, and filmmaker.

Léger wrote in 1945 that "the object in modern painting must become the main character and overthrow the subject. If, in turn, the human form becomes an object, it can considerably liberate possibilities for the modern artist." As the first painter to take as his idiom the imagery of the machine age, and to make the objects of consumer society the subjects of his paintings, Léger has been called a progenitor of Pop Art.

Leger

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Monday, November 17, 2008

Henri Matisse


Henri Matisse (31 December 1869 – 3 November 1954) was a French artist, noted for his use of color and his fluid, brilliant and original draughtsmanship.

As a draughtsman, printmaker, and sculptor, but principally as a painter, Matisse is one of the best-known artists of the twentieth century. Although he was initially labeled as a Fauve, by the 1920s, he was increasingly hailed as an upholder of the classical tradition in French painting.

His mastery of the expressive language of color and drawing is apparent, in a body of work spanning over a half-century, and won him recognition as a leading figure in modern art.

Matisse

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Edward Hopper


Edward Hopper (22 July 1882 – 15 May 1967) was an American painter and printmaker. While most popularly known for his oil paintings, he was equally proficient as a watercolorist and printmaker in etching.

Hopper

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Edvard Munch

Edvard Munch (12 December 1863 – 23 January 1944) was a Norwegian Symbolist painter and printmaker, and an important forerunner of Expressionistic art.

His best-known painting, "The Scream" (1893), is one of the pieces in a series titled "The Frieze of Life", in which Munch explored the themes of life, love, fear, death, and melancholy. As with many of his works, he painted several versions of it.

Munch

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Sunday, November 16, 2008

Joan Miró


Joan Miró i Ferrà (20 April 1893 – 25 December 1983) was a Catalan (Spanish) painter, sculptor, and ceramist born in Barcelona, Catalonia, Spain to the family of a Goldsmith and Watchmaker. His work has been interpreted variously as Surrealism, a sandbox for the subconscious mind, a re-creation of the childlike and a manifestation of Catalan pride.

In numerous interviews dating from the 1930s onwards, Miró expressed contempt for conventional painting methods and his desire to "kill", "murder", or "rape" them in favor of more contemporary means of expression.

Miro

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Joseph Beuys

Joseph Beuys (12 May 1921 – 23 January 1986) was an influential German artist who came to prominence in the 1960s.

He is most famous for his public performances and his energetic championing of the healing potential of art. As well as performances, Beuys produced sculptures, prints and posters, and thousands of drawings. A charismatic and controversial figure, the nature and value of Beuys’s contribution to Western art has elicited a hotly contested and often polarised debate.

Beuys

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Juan Gris


José Victoriano González-Pérez (23 March 1887 – 11 May 1927), better known as Juan Gris, was a Spanish painter and sculptor who lived and worked in France most of his life. His works are closely connected to the emergence of an innovative artistic genre — Cubism.

[[image http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/0/05/Juan_Gris_001.jpg/175px-Juan_Gris_001.jpg]]

Gris articulated most of his aesthetic theories during 1924 and 1925. He delivered his definitive lecture, Des possibilités de la peinture, at the Sorbonne in 1924. Major Gris exhibitions took place at the Galerie Simon in Paris and the Galerie Flechtheim in Berlin in 1923, and at the Galerie Flechtheim in Düsseldorf in 1925.

Gris

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Saturday, November 15, 2008

Kazimir Malevich

Kazimir Severinovich Malevich (23 February 1878 – 15 May 1935) was a painter and art theoretician of Polish descendence, pioneer of geometric abstract art and one of the most important members of the Russian avant-garde and Suprematist movement.

Malevich

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Claude Monet


Claude Monet, also known as Oscar-Claude Monet or Claude Oscar Monet (14 November 1840 – 5 December 1926) was a founder of French impressionist painting, and the most consistent and prolific practitioner of the movement's philosophy of expressing one's perceptions before nature, especially as applied to plein-air landscape painting. The term Impressionism is derived from the title of his painting "Impression, Sunrise".

Monet

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Friday, November 14, 2008

L S Lowry


Laurence Stephen Lowry (1 November 1887–23 February 1976) was an English artist born on Barrett Street, Stretford, near Manchester, Lancashire. Many of his drawings and paintings depict Salford and surrounding areas, including Pendlebury where he lived and worked for over forty years at 117 Station Road, opposite St. Mark's RC Church.

Lowry is famous for painting scenes of life in the industrial districts of northern England during the early 20th century. He had a distinctive style of painting and is best known for urban landscapes peopled with many human figures (matchstick men). He tended to paint these in drab colours. He also painted mysterious unpopulated landscapes, brooding portraits, and the secret 'marionette' works (the latter only found after his death).

Lowry

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Camille Pissarro

Camille Pissarro (10 July 1830 – 13 November 1903) was a French Impressionist painter. His importance resides not only in his visual contributions to Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, but also in his patriarchal standing among his colleagues, particularly Paul Cezanne and Paul Gauguin.

Pissarro

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Thursday, November 13, 2008

Marcel Duchamp

Marcel Duchamp (28 July 1887 – 2 October 1968) was a French artist (he became an American citizen in 1955) whose work and ideas had considerable influence on the development of post-World War II Western art, and whose advice to modern art collectors helped shape the tastes of the Western art world.

Thousands of books and articles attempt to interpret Duchamp's artwork and philosophy, but in interviews and his writing, Duchamp only added to the mystery. The interpretations interested him as creations of their own, and as reflections of the interpreter.

A playful man, Duchamp prodded thought about artistic processes and art marketing, not so much with words, but with actions such as dubbing a urinal "art" and naming it Fountain. He produced relatively few artworks as he quickly moved through the avant-garde rhythms of his time.

++ Artwork (Selected)
* 'Portrait of Chess Players' (1911)
* 'Nude Descending a Staircase, No. 2' (1912)
* Readymades : including 'Fountain' (1917)
* 'The Bride Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors, Even' (Often called The Large Glass). (1915-1923)
* 'The Green Box. Notes and studies for The Bride Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors, Even' (1915-1923)
* Rotoreliefs
* 'Anémic Cinéma' Film (1926)
* 'Being Given: 1 The Waterfall, 2. The Illuminating Gas' (1946-1966)

Duchamp

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Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Bridget Riley


Bridget Louise Riley CH CBE (born 24 April 1931 in London) is an English painter who is one of the foremost proponents of Op Art, art that exploits the fallibility of the human eye.

Riley

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Max Ernst

Max Ernst (2 April 1891 – 1 April 1976) was a German painter, sculptor, graphic artist and poet, considered one of the chief representatives of Dadaism and Surrealism.

Ernst

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Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Balthus

Balthazar Klossowski de Rola (29 February 1908 in Paris – 18 February 2001), known as Balthus was an esteemed Polish/French modern artist.

Balthus' style is primarily classical and academic. Though his technique and compositions were inspired by pre-renaissance painters, there are also eerie intimations reminiscent of contemporary surrealists like de Chirico. Painting the figure at a time when figurative art was largely ignored, he is widely recognised as an important 20th century artist.

Many of his paintings show young girls in an erotic context. Balthus insisted that his work was not pornographic, but that it just recognized the discomforting facts of children's sexuality.

Balthus

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André Derain


André Derain (10 June 1880 – 8 September 1954) was a French painter and co-founder of Fauvism with Henri Matisse.

Derain

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André Breton

André Breton (19 February 1896 – 28 September 1966) was a French writer, poet, and surrealist theorist, and is best known as the main founder of surrealism. His writings include the Surrealist Manifesto of 1924, in which he defined surrealism as pure psychic automatism.


Breton

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Monday, November 10, 2008

Amedeo Modigliani


Amedeo Clemente Modigliani (12 July 1884 – 24 January 1920) was an Italian artist, practicing both painting and sculpture, who pursued his career for the most part in France.

Modigliani was born in Livorno (historically referred to in English as Leghorn), in Tuscany Central Italy and began his artistic studies in Italy before moving to Paris in 1906. Influenced by the artists in his circle of friends and associates, by a range of genres and art movements, and by primitive art, Modigliani's œuvre was nonetheless unique and idiosyncratic. He died in Paris of tubercular meningitis—exacerbated by poverty, overworking, and an excessive use of alcohol and narcotics—at the age of 35.

modigliani


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