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Visual Artists of the 19th and 20th Centuries

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Visual Artists of the 19th and 20th Centuries Powered By Docstoc
					Visual Artists of the th and 20th 19 Centuries
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Salvador Dali 1904-1989
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"Every morning when I wake up", said the painter of Soft Watches (later retitled The Persistence of Memory), "I experience exquisite joy - the joy of being Salvador Dali ..." The native Catalonian was obsessed with both money and fame; painting and speaking were his main occupations, his favorite subject how to discover one's genius.

Anthropomorphic Cabinet

Salvador Dali
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Not exactly loved by the Surrealists, who criticized him for extravagance and his addiction to money (it was Andre Breton who came up with the anagram "Avida Dollars"), Dali's "paranoiac-critical" method nonetheless provided them with a first-rate instrument to liberate intelligence and imagination from the bonds of memory or dreams. Had he been born during the Renaissance, his genius would have met with greater acceptance than was the case in our era, which saw him as a constant source of provocation; he, for his part, described it as "degenerate".

My Giraffe in Fire

Salvador Dali
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Dali commented: "The only difference between me and a madman is the fact that I am not mad" Remarking pithily that: "The difference between the Surrealists and myself is that I am a Surrealist." Dali decodes the fantasies and symbols of his Surrealist visions, penetrating the depths of the irrational and subconscious, elevating hard and soft to the level of aesthetic principles. He and Gala, his wife and muse, are a mythical couple, she his "existential double", his "perpetuation in immortal memory".

The Persistence of Memory

Broken Bridge and the Dream

Soft Construction With Boiled BeansPremonition of Civil War

Geopoliticus

Child Watching the Birth of the New Man

Pablo Picasso 1881-1973
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Pablo Picasso was born on October 25, 1881 in Malaga, Spain, as the son of an art and drawing teacher. He was a brilliant student. He passed the entrance examination for the Barcelona School of Fine Arts at the age of 14 in just one day and was allowed to skip the first two classes. According to one of many legends about the artist's life, his father, recognizing the extraordinary talent of his son, gave him his brushes and palette and vowed to paint never again in his life.

Pablo Picasso
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Blue and Rose Period During his lifetime, the artist went through different periods of characteristic painting styles. The Blue Period of Picasso lasted from about 1900 to 1904. It is characterized by the use of different shades of blue underlining the melancholic style of his subjects - people from the grim side of life with thin, half-starved bodies. His painting style during these years is masterly and convinces even those who reject his later modern style. During Picasso's Rose Period from about 1905 to 1906, his style moved away from the Blue Period to a friendly pink tone with subjects taken from the world of the circus.

Pablo Picasso
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Cubism After several travels to Paris, the artist moved permanently to the "capital of arts" in 1904. There he met all the other famous artists like Henri Matisse, Joan Miro and George Braques. He became a great admirer of Henri Matisse and developed a life-long friendship with the master of French Fauvism. Inspired by the works of Paul Cezanne, he developed together with George Braque and Juan Gris developed the Cubist style. In Cubism, subjects are reduced to basic geometrical shapes. In a later version of Cubism, called synthetic cubism, several views of an object or a person are shown simultaneously from a different perspective in one picture.

Weeping Woman

Pablo Picasso
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Picasso and Guernica In 1937 the artist created his landmark painting Guernica, a protest against the barbaric air raid against a Basque village during the Spanish Civil War. Picasso's Guernica is a huge mural on canvas in black, white and grey which was created for the Spanish Pavilion of the Paris World's Fair in 1937. In Guernica, Picasso used symbolic forms - that are repeatedly found in his works following Guernica like a dying horse or a weeping woman. Guernica was exhibited at the museum of Modern Art in New York until 1981. It was transferred to the Prado Museum in Madrid/Spain in 1981 and was later moved to the Queen Sofia Center of Art, Madrid in 1992. Picasso had disallowed the return of Guernica to Spain until the end of the rule of Fascism by General Franco.

Guernica

Pablo Picasso
Pablo Picasso and Women Picasso changed his companions at least as often as his painting styles. The relationships with women influenced his mood and even his art styles. The shift from the "blue" to the "rose period" was probably a result of meeting Fernande Olivier, his first companion. The artist made numerous portraits of his wives and companions and of his children. During his early years in Paris, he lived with Fernande Olivier for seven years. During World War I, from 1914 to 1918, Picasso worked in Rome where he met his first wife, Olga Koklova, a Russian ballet dancer. In 1927 he met Marie Therese Walther, a seventeen year old girl and began a relationship with her. In 1936 another woman, Dora Maar, a photographer, stepped into his life. In 1943 he encountered a young female painter, Francoise Gilot. In 1947 she gave birth to Claude, and in 1949 to Paloma, Picasso's third and fourth child. The artist's last companion was Jacqueline Roque. He met her in 1953 and married her in 1961.

Girl Before a Mirror

Pablo Picasso
In 1965 Pablo Picasso had to undergo a prostrate operation. After a period of rest, he concentrated on drawings and a series of 347 etchings. In spite of his health problems, he created a number of paintings during his last years. On April 8, 1973 he died at the age of 91. "I think about Death all the time. She is the only woman who never leaves me."

Three Musicians

Pablo Picasso
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There are numerous books and articles with anecdotes, citations and interviews by Picasso. It is hard to figure out what is real and what are inventions or fakes. Picasso did not seem to care too much what the press wrote about him as long as they wrote about him at all. Whether by intuition or carefully planned, he was a marketing genius, spinning his own legend at lifetime. Picasso had an excellent business sense. He paid even small amounts by cheque: "People rather keep the cheque for my famous signature than to cash it." He enjoyed being famous and rich. He was charming and witty and he liked to confuse, to provoke and to have his fun with the public. After visiting an exhibition of children's drawings: "When I was their age I could draw like Raphael, but it took me a lifetime to learn to draw like them." About art: "You expect me to tell you what art is? If I knew it, I would keep it for myself." About abstract art: "There is no abstract art. You must always start with something. Afterwards you can remove all traces of reality."

Dorthea Lange
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Dorothea Lange photographed the nation’s soul. Hired in the 1930s and 1940s by the federal government, Lange recorded the men, women and children whose lives on society’s margins were absent of color and voice. During the heyday of the New Deal, she documented the rural poor whose meager existence stretched from the southeastern to the southwestern states. And in the heated atmosphere of patriotic fervor prompted by Pearl Harbor, she captured the human dignity of Japanese Americans forced to leave their homes and relocate to the internment camps. In thousands of her photographs, Lange stayed consistent with her own view of the humanity: She sought to uncover the inner strength and quiet courage of America’s “everyman.” That she succeeded leaves a visual legacy that tells us much about who we are as individuals and as a nation.

Dorthea Lange (1895-1965)
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In 1933, Dorothea Lange, a young, successful portrait photographer, picked up her camera and left her studio, located on Union Street in San Francisco. Compelled by the visible human anguish of the Great Depression, she traveled through the streets to a food distribution area -- a bread line --- that had been recently set up by White Angel, a wealthy woman living in San Francisco.

Dorthea Lange
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That day Dorothea Lange took several photographs. But the most telling was the one of an "unshaven, hunched-up little man, leaning on a railing with a tin can between his arms, his hands clenched, the line of his mouth bitter, his back turned to those others waiting for a handout." Lange tacked the developed image of this man on the wall of her studio, naming it "White Angel Bread Line." Next to that image, she put a quotation from the English philosopher, Francis Bacon: The contemplation of things as they are without error or confusion without substitution or imposture is in itself a nobler thing than a whole harvest of invention. Both remained on that wall for the years to come.

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White Angel Breadline

Dorthea Lange
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More significantly, the combination of these two reminders proved transformational for Dorothea Lange. From that day until her death in 1965, she applied her creative imagination, her commitment to excellence, and her skill as a photographer to record social and cultural events in America. Best known – and perhaps most lasting --- are her photographs of the 1930s and 1940s.

Dorthea Lange
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Hers is a social history: the seeing of those least able to have a voice during the pivotal years of the Great Depression and World War II. With camera in hand, Dorothea Lange recorded the forgotten men, women and children of the 1930s: the rural poor whose meager existence stretched from the southeastern to the southwestern states. Then, as Americans' attentions and energies turned from economic turmoil to fighting fascism, Lange used her critical eye to record the human dignity and pride of Japanese Americans forced to leave their homes and relocate to the internment camps.

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"These were some pretty terrible chapters of that history [evacuation and internment of the Japanese and Japanese Americans]. … The whole thing, the feelings and tempers and people’s attitudes, were very complex and very heated at that time .… What was, of course, horrifying, was to do this thing completely on the basis of what blood may be coursing through a person’s veins, nothing else. Nothing to do with your affiliations or friendships or associations. Just blood.”

Dorothea Lange, 1960

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Migrant Mother
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"…She seemed to know, to accept, to welcome her position, the citadel of the family, the strong place that could not be taken. And since [her husband and children] could not know hurt or fear unless she acknowledged hurt and fear, she had practiced denying them in herself. And since, when a joyful thing happened, they looked to see whether joy was on her, it was her habit to build up laughter out of inadequate materials. But better than joy was calm … And from her great and humble position in the family she had taken dignity and a clean calm beauty. From her position as healer, her hands had grown sure and cool and quite; from her position as arbiter she had become as remote and faultless in judgment as a goddess. She seemed to know that if she swayed the family shook, and if she ever really deeply wavered or despaired the family would fall, the family will to function would be gone..." John Steinbeck’s Ma Joad, Grapes of Wrath

"We want the Mexican because we can treat them as we cannot treat any other living
man. We can control them by keeping them at night behind bolted gates, within a stockade eight feet high, surrounded by barbed wire … we can make them work under armed guards in the fields." Interview in "Organization Efforts of Mexican Agricultural Worker's, "Works Progress Administration,
Federal Writers' Project File

Georgia O'Keeffe 1887-1986
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"My first memory is of the brightness of light...light all around. I was sitting among pillows on a quilt on the ground...very large white pillows..." Georgia Totto O'Keeffe was born in a farmhouse on a large dairy farm outside of Sun Prairie, Wisconsin on November 15, 1887. Education for women was a family tradition. Georgia's own mother, Ida had been educated in the East. All the daughters but one became professional women, attesting to her influence on them. When Georgia was in the eighth grade she asked a daughter of a farm employee what she was going to do when she grew up. The girl said she didn't know. Georgia replied very definitely... "...I am going to be an artist!"--"I don't really know where I got my artist idea...I only know that by that time it was definitely settled in my mind."

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Red Snapdragons

Iris

Georgia O’Keeffe
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Known for her striking flower paintings and other captivating works, Georgia O’Keeffe was one of the greatest American artists of the twentieth century. She took to making art at a young age and went to study at the Art Institute of Chicago in the early 1900s. Later, while living in New York, she studied with such artists as William Merritt Chase as a member of the Art Students League

Grey line with black blue and yellows

Georgia O’Keeffe
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Georgia O’Keeffe found an advocate in famed photographer and gallery owner Alfred Stieglitz. He showed her work to the public for the first time in 1916 at his gallery 291. Married in 1924, the two formed a professional and personal partnership that lasted until his death in 1946. Some of her popular works from this early period include Black Iris (1926) and Oriental Poppies (1928). Living in New York, she translated some of her environment onto the canvas with such paintings as Shelton Hotel, N.Y. No. 1 (1926).

Oriental Poppies

Georgia O’Keeffe
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After frequently visiting New Mexico since the late 1920s, Georgia O’Keeffe moved there for good in 1946 after her husband’s death and explored the area’s rugged landscapes in many works. This environment inspired such paintings as Black Cross, New Mexico (1929) and Cow’s Skull with Calico Roses (1931). Georgia O’Keeffe died on March 6, 1986, in Santa Fe, Mexico. As popular as ever, her works can be seen at museums around the world as well as the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

Red Canna

Ram’s Head White Hollyhock Hills

Frank Lloyd Wright 1867-1959
Frank Lloyd Wright spent more than 70 years creating designs that revolutionized the art and architecture of this century. Many innovations in today's buildings are products of his imagination. In all he designed 1141 works - including houses, offices, churches, schools, libraries, bridges, museums and many other building types. Of that total, 532 resulted in completed works, 409 of which still stand.

However, Wright's creative mind was not confined to architecture. He also designed furniture, fabrics, art glass, lamps, dinnerware, silver, linens and graphic arts. In addition, he was a prolific writer, and educator and a philosopher.
He authored twenty books and countless articles, lectured throughout the United States and in Europe, and developed a remarkable plan for decentralizing urban America (Broadacre City) that continues to be debated by scholars and writers to this day -- some 60 years after its conception.

Wright is considered by most authorities to be the 20th century's greatest architect. Indeed, the American Institute of Architects in a recent national survey, recognized Frank Lloyd Wright to be "the greatest American architect of all time." Architectural Record magazine (the official magazine of the American Institute of Architects) declared that Wright's buildings stand out among the most significant architectural works during the last 100 years in the world.

Frank Lloyd Wright
A Reverance for Democracy and Nature Wright revered the American experience and believed that democracy was the best form of government. Throughout his life he strived to create a new architecture that reflected the American democratic experience, an architecture based not on failing European and foreign models (such as Greek, Egyptian and Renaissance styles) but rather an architecture based solely on America's democratic values and human dignity. He often referred to the United States as Usonia. The city plan, Broadacre City, was the culmination of Wright's ideas on a new architecture for a new democracy. Wright preached the beauty of native materials and insisted that buildings grow naturally from their surroundings. He freed Americans from the Victorian "boxes" of the 19th century and helped create the open plan with rooms that flowed and opened out to each other.

Frank Lloyd Wright
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By changing architecture and changing the way America lived, Wright may have had an even more profound effect. As Wright said, "Whether people are fully conscious of this or not, they actually derive countenance and sustenance from the 'atmosphere' of the things they live in or with. They are rooted in them just as a plant is in the soil in which it is planted." Throughout his life Wright spoke of the influence of nature on his work and attributed his love of nature to those early years in the rural Wisconsin countryside. During summers spent on his uncle's farm he learned to look at the patterns and rhythms found in nature - the branch of a tree (a natural cantilever), outcroppings of limestone, and the ever-changing sandbars.

Frank Lloyd Wright
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Wright later advised his apprentices to "study nature, love nature, stay close to nature. It will never fail you." The influence of nature is apparent in his work. From the earth-hugging "Prairie" houses such as the 1909 Robie House in Illinois and Taliesin in Wisconsin, to the cascading cantilevers of the 1936 Fallingwater in Pennsylvania (considered to be the most famous house ever designed for nonroyalty), from the sky-lighted forest of concrete columns of the 1936 Johnson Wax Administration Building in Racine, Wisconsin, the rugged beauty of Taliesin West in Arizona, to the spiraling, "snaillike" Guggenheim Museum completed in 1959 in New York City, his work shows a command of nature and native materials and an instinctive understanding of social and human needs. No other architect so intuitively designed to human scale. No other architecture took greater advantage of setting and environment. No other architect glorified the sense of "shelter" as did Frank Lloyd Wright. "A building is not just a place to be. It is a way to be," he said.

Frank Lloyd Wright
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A Timeless Contribution Wright's work has stood the test of time. His buildings are still relevant to today's values. People have moved and found new jobs just to own a Wright house. Grass-roots efforts have developed to preserve his work. In 1970, there were only two Wright homes open to the public. Today there are more than twenty, which together attract more than one million visitors a year. More than one-third of Wright buildings are listed on the National Register of Historic Places or are in a National Historic District.

Jacob Lawrence (1917With the culture of Harlam as his primary source of inspiration, Jacob Lawrence possessed a consciousness of black history that is generally not included in textbooks. Jacob Lawrence was a student of life and made exposing the reality of black history though art his life long pursuit. After a long period of research and study research, Jacob Lawrence began his first series documenting African history.

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Lawrence found inspiration in the Harlem community where he was raised. His early work depicts scenes of Harlem life— people, rooms, facades, sidewalks, streets, and storefronts—using bold colors and elemental shapes in commercial tempera (poster) paints on lightweight brown paper. Several early paintings portray his immediate environment, including his studio, home, and family.

Jacob Lawrence
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Lawrence's original intention was to provide African Americans with a sense of pride, accomplishment, and hope during a time when many blacks were experiencing extreme political, economic, and racial difficulties. In 1986, the Spradling Ames Corporation and the Amistad Research Center, in conjunction with Lawrence and silk-screen artist Lou Stovall, decided to publish the works of Lawrence in silk-screen. General Toussaint L'Ouverture was the first painting to be issued as part of this silk-screen presentation and has been described as " Jacob Lawrence's most heroic painting and maybe his most decorative."

The Trains were Packed Continually with Migrants

The Migration Series

The Migrants Cast Their Ballots

Andy Warhol 1928-1987

Andy Warhol
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Andy was born in 1928 in Pittsburgh as the son of Slovak immigrants. His original name was Andrew Warhola. His father was as a construction worker and died in an accident when Andy was 13 years old. Andy showed an early talent in drawing and painting. After high school he studied commercial art at the Carnegie Institute of Technology in Pittsburgh. Warhol graduated in 1949 and went to New York where he worked as an illustrator for magazines like Vogue and Harpar's Bazaar and for commercial advertising. He soon became one of New York's most sought of and successful commercial illustrators.

Andy Warhol
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In 1952 Andy Warhol had his first one-man show exhibition at the Hugo Gallery in New York. In 1956 he had an important group exhibition at the renowned Museum of Modern Art. In the sixties Warhol started painting daily objects of mass production like Campbell Soup cans and Coke bottles. Soon he became a famous figure in the New York art scene. From 1962 on he started making silkscreen prints of famous personalities like Marilyn Monroe or Elizabeth Taylor. The quintessence of Andy Warhol art was to remove the difference between fine arts and the commercial arts used for magazine illustrations, comic books, record albums or advertising campaigns. Warhol once expressed his philosophy in one poignant sentence: "When you think about it, department stores are kind of like museums".

Andy Warhol
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The pop artist not only depicted mass products but he also wanted to mass produce his own works of pop art. Consequently he founded The Factory in 1962. It was an art studio where he employed in a rather chaotic way "art workers" to mass produce mainly prints and posters but also other items like shoes designed by the artist. The first location of the Factory was in 231 E. 47th Street, 5th Floor (between 1st & 2nd Ave). Warhol's favorite printmaking technique was silkscreen. It came closest to his idea of proliferation of art. Apart from being an Art Producing Machine, the Factory served as a filmmaking studio. Warhol made over 300 experimental underground films - most rather bizarre and some rather pornographic. His first one was called Sleep and showed nothing else but a man sleeping over six hours.

Andy Warhol
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In July of 1968 the pop artist was shot two to three times into his chest by a woman named Valerie Solanis. Andy was seriously wounded and only narrowly escaped death. Valerie Solanis had worked occasionally for the artist in the Factory. Solanis had founded a group named SCUM (Society for Cutting Up Men) and she was its sole member. When Valerie Solanis was arrested the day after, her words were "He had too much control over my life". Warhol never recovered completely from his wounds and had to wear a bandage around his waist for the rest of his life

Andy Warhol
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After this assassination attempt the pop artist made a radical turn in his process of producing art. The philosopher of art mass production now spent most of his time making individual portraits of the rich and affluent of his time like Mick Jagger, Michael Jackson or Brigitte Bardot. Warhol's activities became more and more entrepreneurial. He started the magazine Interview and even a night-club. In 1974 the Factory was moved to 860 Broadway. In 1975 Warhol published THE philosophy of Andy Warhol. In this book he describes what art is: "Making money is art, and working is art and good business is the best art."

Andy Warhol
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Warhol was a homosexual with a slightly bizarre personality. In the fifties he dyed his hair straw-blond. Later he replaced his real hair by blond and silver-grey wigs. The pop artist loved cats, and images of them can be found on quite a few of his art works. One of Andy's friends described him as a true workaholic. Warhol was obsessed by the ambition to become famous and wealthy. And he knew he could achieve the American dream only by hard work. In his last years Warhol promoted other artists like Keith Haring or Robert Mapplethorpe. Andy Warhol died February 22, 1987 from complications after a gall bladder operation. More than 2000 people attended the memorial mass at St.Patrick's Cathedral. The pop art icon Warhol was also a religious man - a little known fact.


				
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