Mark Tobey is a great artist and well ahead of his time with his abstract painting. His works look to be coincidental, but these abstract paintings and drawings are far from accidentally. It is a bit like the painting by Hans Hartung. The sketches he makes are the starting point for the paintings. Tobey has influenced Jackson Pollock with his paintings, but never has become the household name that Pollock became after his death. Still his paintings are impressive and there are always parts to discover and admire. It is a way of modern painting, greatly influenced by Chinese calligraphy, that never grows old fashioned. It fascinates from beginning to end. Finding Tobey paintings in Europe is a hard job. There are some of them to be found in the Beyeler and Kunstmuseum Basel since he moved to Switzerland in the Sixties with his companion. But his paintings are rare, i am not completely sure, but according to my information, but even the Stedelijk Museum has no works by Tobey in its collection. They had an exhibition with Tobey in 1966, which catalogue was designed by Wim Crouwel and is one of the best Crouwel designed in the Sixties for the Stedelijk Museum (available at www.ftn-books.com), but that is all i could find. Still Tobey is well worth checking out, since he is the natural link between Jackson Pollock and the newest generation of Abstract painters.
The year is 1958, …the curator Willem Sandberg. The exhibition JONG AMERIKA SCHILDERT, organized by the Stedelijk Museum together with the Museum Of Modern Art,
This is arguably Sandberg his most important exhibition, because this was for the years to come the foundation under all Stedelijk Museum Exhibitions. The artists list now reads like an all time greatest list with many of them record breaking artists. Not only in auction results, but certainly with the total number of exhibition visitors. Just some of the now very famous names who were not that well known in those days. Pollock, Newman, Rothko, de Kooning and Kline are now among the most appreciated artists ever and all were in this one exhibition. Willem Sandberg wrote history with this exhibition and what makes the catalogue even more worth wile is not only the typical Sandberg design but the special art by Pollock and Gottlieb which is used for the cover. This catalogue is available at www.ftn-books.com
Two names spring to mind when you look at the works by Jean Paul Riopelle ( Canada , 1923) and read about his life. He lived near Giverny ( the place where Monet had his studio and gardens) and he used a technique much the same as Jackson Pollock did. Dripping paint on a horizontal canvas. The result ….. colorful and abstract compositions which have the colors of a Monet painting and the abstract construction of a Pollock one.
Riopelle’s style in the 1940s changed quickly from Surrealism to Lyrical Abstraction (related to abstract expressionism), in which he used myriad tumultuous cubes and triangles of multicolored elements, facetted with a palette knife, spatula, or trowel, on often large canvases to create powerful atmospheres.
The presence of long filaments of paint in his painting from 1948 through the early 1950s has often been seen as resulting from a dripping technique like that of Jackson Pollock. Rather, the creation of such effects came from the act of throwing, with a palette knife or brush, large quantities of paint onto the stretched canvas (positioned vertically).
For me Riopelle is a fascinating artist and because of the beautiful publications Maeght made with this artist it is not entirely out of reach financially. A very nice Riopelle publications can be obtained for less than euro 100,– at www.ftn-books.com
Willem Sandberg was the fan and admirer who initiated the first presentations of Jackson Pollock in Europe. The Stedelijk Museum presented on several occasions his art and during these exhibitions made acquisitions resulting in some of the most iconic and important paintings in their collection. Among them is REFLECTIONS OF THE BIG DIPPER from 1947.
Reflection of the Big Dipper consists of built up layers of paint with dripped enamel as the final touch, concluding the composition. It was around 1947 that Jackson Pollock traded in his brushes for sticks, trowels and knives and began adding foreign matter, such as sand, broken glass, nails, coins, paint-tube tops and bottle caps to his canvases. From this point on, Pollock’s application of paint became his main theme, which he tried to radicalize. With the body of work he thus created, Pollock found a unique position within the concurrent Abstract-Expressionist movement. Reflection of the Big Dipper was exhibited at the Betty Parsons Gallery in 1948, along with sixteen other paintings by Jackson Pollock. The show received positive reviews. Pollock’s works from this time are a transitional step between a more traditional handling of paint and his revolutionary technique of dripping paint on canvases off a large scale.
www.ftn-books.com has a nice selection of Stedelijk Museum publications on Jackson Pollock available.
Pearl Perlmuter (New York, September 23, 1915 – Amsterdam, May 8, 2008) was a Dutch-American sculptor.
Pearl Perlmuter grew as the daughter of orthodox Eastern European Jews in New York City.
She studied law at Fordham University School of Law and attended evening classes sculptureat the prestigious Art Students League of New York (from 1940 to 1943 by William Zorach and from 1943 to 1945 by Ossip Zadkine).
She made at this time to know the painting of Willem de Kooning and Jackson Pollock, both representatives of the abstract expressionist movement.
In 1945 she met the Dutchman Wessel Couzijn, a Jew who had emigrated to the United States.
He had also registered at the Art Students League.
This meeting led to a marriage between the two in December 1945.
In 1946 Couzijn Wessel and his wife returned to Amsterdam, where they had hoped to build a career, but where it mostly Couzijn was that the orders received.
From 1963 to 1967 she taught at the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague and from 1977 to 1981 at the Academy of Art and Industry in Enschede.
In 2008 she died at the age of 92.
Publications on Perlmuter are scarce, but www.ftn-books.com has one publication available
It was 1977. …..the first time i visited the US and went to New York together with my father we visited the museum of Modern Art. In which i saw for the very first time a large Jackson Pollock drip painting. It was an amazing experience and i remember standing in that room …in awe and amazement of such a large , beautiful, impressive, overwhelming abstract painting. The size of it, the spontaneous dripping and the extreme detail when you went close up to it, opened a door to abstract Modern Art for me. Since i have seen many Pollock paintings, but none was so perfect as the very first one i encountered in the Moma. the ONE, number 31, 1950 painting
There are some nice action movies with Pollock painting to be found on Youtube and this is possibly the one that shows best the creating of a Pollock painting.
and i am proud to have both Pollock catalogues that were produced for the Pollock exhibitions in the Stedelijk Museum at www.ftn-books.
For many people in the US , Willem de Kooning is an American painter , however ….for us dutch, de Kooning is a dutchman. Born in Rotterdam and educated at the Rotterdam evening academy and working for the METZ department store as an interior decorator until he decided to go to the US in 1926. He went as a stowaway and would become the abstract expressionist painter we admire. He met artists from and became part of the Abstract expressionist mouvement. Meeting with Pollock, Still, Rothko and Newman made him aware of his qualities as an abstract painter developing a style of his own and building an important oeuvre from there on. He never lost touch with his homecountry the Netherlands and this resulted in a large and very important collection of De Kooning paintings in the Stedelijk Museum. Edy de Wilde was the director who made this happen and it is the luck of the visitors of the Stedelijk that in one spot they can discover and admire so many excellent De Kooning paintings.
When you mix Jackson Pollock with Jean Dubuffet with a topping of a little bit Picasso you get Antonio Saura. Abstraction at his best, because within the composition one always can recognize something realistic. A face , a body , some houses they are all there if you find the rest to study these great paintings. This is not simple, easy art, but it needs to be savored in a slow way. Because the fist impression is chaos, one tends to walk away from it, but just give it a minute or two and the paintings opens up to you.
La grande foule, 1963, oil on canvas, 220 x 515 cm
It is a pity that there are so few of these fascinating Saura paintings in the Netherlands, but once you have a chance to visit the modern art museums in Spain they are easy to spot and to enjoy. www.ftn-books.com is fortunate to have a nice selection of books on Saura including the Stedelijk Museum catalogue by Wim Crouwel.
Abstract Expressionism and even the dutch version of the drip paintings by Pollock, that for me is the meaning of Gerard Leonard van den Eerenbeemt, who even had a solo exhibition at the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam ( 1970, supported by a very nice catalogue designed by Wim Crouwel.
Why mentioning van den Eerenbeemt. First because he has a unique style of his own and deserves to become better known outside the Netherlands and secondly because i am auctioning this coming weeks an extremely nice abstract drawing in black ink at http://www.kunstveiling.nl
What makes this auction important is the fact that in 1988 his studio with his complete oeuvre and archives was burnt down to the ground, leaving only some 100 drawings in the collection of the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam and some drawings and paintings in private collections. This makes his work scarce and because of its quality highly desirable and collectable. Please take a look at the auction and of course there is this nice Crouwel publication available at www. ftn-books.com
BTW. As you can see the drawing is kept/ flat in a drawer of my “new” acquisition. An “antique” drawings dresser which was formally used in a convent in Bergen op Zoom. I found this on Marktplaats and since, my offices have become much more organized . The picture above it is by Ossip (1953).
In contrast with the colorful works by Daniel Buren, This blog on Pierre Soulages. The master of black and white from France. I have not seen many works by him in the real, but what i have seen impressed me very much. One of the last museums i visited in France was the Centre Pompidou in Metz. The new museum which houses a few of the extremely large works from the Centre Georges Pompidou Museum. Among them a very impressive large Soulages.
Only for this painting alone the museum is worth visiting. Bu there are a few others worth mentioning. A very impressive large Miro and one of the best Louise Nevelson sculptures i have ever seen.
But back to Soulages. Soulages is the French counterpart of Pollock and recognized as one of the great abstract expressionists in the world. His works have been on show in several European Museums, but a few years ago a special Soulages museum opened in Rodez. Became interested in Soulages? Then Visit the museums Georges Pompidou ( Paris and Metz) and the Soulages museum in Rodez. A great excuse for a trip to France …..
Artist/ Author: Oliver Boberg
Title : Memorial
Publisher: Oliver Boberg
Measurements: Frame measures 51 x 42 cm. original C print is 35 x 25 cm.
signed by Oliver Boberg in pen and numbered 14/20 from an edition of 20