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Lecture 7

FAH246 - Lecture 7, October 24.docx

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University of Toronto St. George
Mark Cheetham

The Gesture in the 1950’s from autographic expression to the evacuation of the personal. Excavation 1950 - abstract expressionism - the eye can never rest, there is no subject, everything is moving, can imagine stopping and trying to think what he was doing - Pollack: quality of working all over the surface and not singling one area out as being less/more important - non figurative Willem de Kooning, Pink Angels, 1945 - artist of the earlier generation - always painting figurism/ lingering interest in the figure Woman, 1949-1950 - distressing series, paintings of women - torn apart, extreme in colour, gestures, - returned to earlier interests - returns to the standard of western art, as the female nude - do you have to be fully abstract all the time? Does it always have the goal of being more abstract? Guston, The Clock, 1955-1957 Guston, Painter III, 1963 - a portrait human head -sense of abstraction, colourful and full of gesture, - abstract expressionists were upset often - mysteriously reintroducing the figure Guston, Artist in his studio, 1969 - themes: artist in his studio - cartoon painting another - traditions, conventions, representation Guston, Scared Stiff, 1970 - continued with basic relationships - he had many continuing themes cigar, pointing, fear, sole of shoes - no more gesture or emotion like abstract expressionism - many people drop out his work of the abstract expressionism genre Rothko, Number 3-13 (Magenta, Black, Green on Orange (1949) Something is there, - working more in the abstract expressionist way - signature colour palette Rothko, No 1(Untitled, 1948) “Tried to express what he deemed “basic human emotions – tragedy, ecstasy, doom, the people who weep before my pictures are having the same religious experience I had when I painted them.” Rothko Seagram Mural, 1959 - commission for architect Philip Johnson, wanted to install them in the seagram building restaurant - couldn’t see his work in a busy restaurant - are placed in an appropriate setting - seem to mean something more than themselves, but you do not know what that is - very mysterious Newman, Euclidian Abyss, 1947-1948 - works with texture, although the medium is thin - geometrical Newman, The moment, 1946 -encouraged by Jackson Pollack - emotive, - huge titles - subject matter was very important to him - Pollack and Newman both loved native American work Positive primitive - destroyed most of his work previously - dividing elements (zips) - division between different realms (colour and texture) turned into two different things Onement 1, 1948 - a breakthrough work - maked off the middle mark with tape - he put a layer over top - he thought about it for a year - becoming one - so fundamental, because it is about division – when something is completely unified is split - shows that it was just one and it is teetering on the moment of becoming two - he wanted you to get up close to the work was trying to get away from trying to see the whole thing he didn’t want you to back up to get the whole vision wanted you to feel the emotion of the colour Vir Heroicus Sublimis Only when you are right up against it Can only feel the zips through your peripheral vision Physical relationship to the work up close Precise geometry Really g
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