Day 290- Kathe Kollwitz- Let Not Another Man Fall

It’s Day 290 and my friend Paul asked me if I had paid tribute to today’s artist and I hadn’t even heard of her.  I decided to do some research and she’s amazing.  I was also excited to attempt a charcoal portrait since I don’t have much experience (except my first year of art school) with that medium.  I had tons of fun and got really dirty.  Join me in honoring Kathe Kollwitz today.

Kathe Kollwitz

Kathe Kollwitz

Kathe Kollwitz- Woodcut

Kathe Kollwitz- Woodcut

Käthe Kollwitz (8 July 1867 – 22 April 1945) was a German painter, printmaker, and sculptor whose work offered an eloquent and often searing account of the human condition, and the tragedy of war, in the first half of the 20th century. Her empathy for the less fortunate, expressed most famously through the graphic means of drawing, etching, lithography, and woodcut, embraced the victims of poverty, hunger, and war. Initially her work was grounded in Naturalism, and later took on Expressionistic qualities.

Kollwitz was born as Käthe Schmidt in Königsberg (now Kaliningrad, Russia), East Prussia, the fifth child in her family. Her father, Karl Schmidt, was a radical Social democrat

Mother with Two Children- Kathe Kollwitz

Mother with Two Children- Kathe Kollwitz

who became a mason and house builder. Her mother, Katherina Schmidt, was the daughter of Julius Rupp, a Lutheran pastor who was expelled from the official Evangelical State Church in Prussia and founded an independent congregation. Her education was greatly influenced by her grandfather’s lessons in religion and socialism.

Recognizing her talent, Kollwitz’s father arranged for her to begin lessons in drawing and copying plaster casts when she was twelve. At sixteen she began

Widows and Orphans- Kathe Kollwitz

Widows and Orphans- Kathe Kollwitz

making drawings of working people, the sailors and peasants she saw in her father’s offices. Wishing to continue her studies at a time when no colleges or academies were open to young women, Kollwitz enrolled in an art school for women in Berlin. There she studied with Karl Stauffer-Bern, a friend of the artist Max Klinger. The etchings of Klinger, their technique and social concerns, were an inspiration to Kollwitz.

At the age of seventeen, Kollwitz became engaged to Karl Kollwitz, a medical student. In 1888, she went to Munich to study at the Women’s Art School, where she realized her strength was not as a painter, but a draughtsman. In 1890, she returned to Königsberg, rented her first studio, and continued to draw labourers.

In 1891, Kollwitz married Karl, by this time a doctor, who tended to the poor in

Germany's Children Are Starving- Kathe Kollwitz

Germany’s Children Are Starving- Kathe Kollwitz

Berlin, where the couple moved into the large apartment that would be Kollwitz’s home until it was destroyed in World War II. The proximity of her husband’s practice proved invaluable:

“The motifs I was able to select from this milieu (the workers’ lives) offered me, in a simple and forthright way, what I discovered to be beautiful…. People from the bourgeois sphere were altogether without appeal or interest. All middle-class life seemed pedantic to me. On the other hand, I felt the proletariat had guts. It was not until much later…when I got to know the women who would come to my husband for help, and incidentally also to me, that I was powerfully moved by the fate of the proletariat and everything connected with its way of life…. But what I would like to emphasize once more is that compassion and commiseration were at first of very little importance in attracting me to the representation of proletarian life; what mattered was simply that I found it beautiful.”

Survivors- Kathe Kollwitz

Survivors- Kathe Kollwitz

It is believed Kollwitz suffered from anxiety during her childhood due to the death of her siblings, including the early death of her younger brother, Benjamin. More recent research suggests that Kollwitz may have suffered from a childhood neurological disorder called Alice in Wonderland syndrome, commonly associated with migraines and sensory hallucinations.

Between the births of her sons — Hans in 1892 and Peter in 1896 — Kollwitz saw a performance of Gerhart Hauptmann’s The Weavers, which dramatized the oppression of the Silesian weavers in Langembielau and their failed revolt in 1842. Inspired, the artist ceased work on a series of etchings she had intended to illustrate Émile Zola’s Germinal, and produced a cycle of six works on the weavers theme, three lithographs (PovertyDeath, and Conspiracy) and three etchings with aquatint and sandpaper (March of the WeaversRiot, and The End). Not a literal illustration of the drama, the works were a free and naturalistic expression of the workers’ misery, hope, courage, and, eventually, doom. The cycle was exhibited publicly in 1898 to wide acclaim. But when Adolf Menzel nominated her work for the gold medal of the Große Deutsche Kunstausstellung in Berlin, Kaiser Wilhelm II withheld his approval. Nevertheless, The Weavers became Kollwitz’ most widely acclaimed work.

Kollwitz’s second major cycle of works was the Peasant War, which, subject to many preliminary drawings and discarded ideas in

Self-Portrait- Kathe Kollwitz

Self-Portrait- Kathe Kollwitz

lithography, occupied her from 1902 to 1908. The German Peasants’ War was a violent revolution which took place in Southern Germany in the early years of the Reformation, beginning in 1525; peasants who had been treated as slaves took arms against feudal lords and the church. As was The Weavers, this subject, too, might have been suggested by a Hauptmann drama, Florian Geyer. However, the initial source of Kollwitz’s interest dated to her youth, when she and her brother Konrad playfully imagined themselves as barricade fighters in a revolution. The artist identified with the character of Black Anna, a woman cited as a protagonist in the uprising. When completed, the Peasant Warconsisted of pieces in etching, aquatint, and soft ground: PlowingRapedSharpening the ScytheArming in the VaultOutbreakAfter the Battle (which, eerily premonitory, features a mother searching through corpses in the night, looking for her son), and The Prisoners. In all, the works were technically more impressive than those of The Weavers, owing to their greater size and dramatic command of light and shadow. They are Kollwitz’s highest achievements as an etcher.

Kathe Kollwitz

Kathe Kollwitz

While working on Peasant War, Kollwitz twice visited Paris, and enrolled in classes at the Académie Julian in order to learn how to sculpt. The etching Outbreak was awarded the Villa Romana prize, which provided for a year’s stay, in 1907, in a studio in Florence. Although Kollwitz did no work, she later recalled the impact of early Renaissance art.

After her return, Kollwitz continued to exhibit her work, but was impressed by the work of younger compatriots—the Expressionists andBauhaus—and resolved to simplify her means of expression. Subsequent works such as Runover, 1910, and Self-Portrait, 1912, show this new direction. She also continued to work on sculpture.

Kollwitz lost her youngest son, Peter, on the battlefield in World War I in October 1914, prompting a prolonged depression. By the end of the year she had made drawings for a monument to Peter and his fallen comrades; she destroyed the monument in 1919 and began again in 1925. The memorial, titled The Grieving Parents, was finally completed and placed in the Belgian cemetery of Roggevelde in 1932. Later, when Peter’s grave was moved to the nearby Vladslo German war cemetery, the statues were also moved.

In 1917, on her fiftieth birthday, the galleries of Paul Cassirer provided a retrospective exhibition of one hundred and fifty drawings by

Self Portrait with Hand on Brow- Kathe Kollwitz

Self Portrait with Hand on Brow- Kathe Kollwitz

Kollwitz.

Kollwitz was a committed socialist and pacifist, who was eventually attracted to communism; her political and social sympathies found expression in the “memorial sheet for Karl Liebknecht” and in her involvement with the Arbeitsrat für Kunst, a part of the Social Democratic Party government in the first few weeks after the war. As the war wound down and a nationalistic appeal was made for old men and children to join the fighting, Kollwitz implored in a published statement:

“There has been enough of dying! Let not another man fall!”

Beggars- Kathe Kollwitz

Beggars- Kathe Kollwitz

While working on the sheet for Karl Liebknecht, she found etching insufficient for expressing monumental ideas. After viewing woodcuts by Ernst Barlach at the Secessionexhibitions, she completed the Liebknecht sheet in the new medium and made about thirty woodcuts by 1926.

In 1920 Kollwitz was elected a member of the Prussian Academy of Arts, the first woman to be so honored. Membership entailed a regular income, a large studio, and a full professorship.

In 1933, after the establishment of the National-Socialist regime, the Nazi Party authorities forced her to resign her place on the faculty of the Akademie der Künste following her support of the Dringender Appell. Her work was removed from museums. Although she was banned from exhibiting, one of her “mother and child” pieces was used by the Nazis for propaganda.

Working now in a smaller studio, in the mid-1930s she completed her last major cycle of lithographs, Death, which consisted of eight stones: Woman Welcoming DeathDeath with Girl in LapDeath Reaches for a Group of ChildrenDeath Struggles with a WomanDeath on the HighwayDeath as a FriendDeath in the Water, and The Call of Death.

In July 1936, she and her husband were visited by the Gestapo, who threatened her with arrest and deportation to a Nazi concentration

Kathe Kollwitz

Kathe Kollwitz

camp; they resolved to commit suicide if such a prospect became inevitable. However, Kollwitz was by now a figure of international note, and no further action was taken. On her seventieth birthday, she “received over one hundred and fifty telegrams from leading personalities of the art world”, as well as offers to house her in the United States, which she declined for fear of provoking reprisals against her family.

She outlived her husband (who died from an illness in 1940) and her grandson Peter, who died in action in World War II two years later.

She was evacuated from Berlin in 1943. Later that year, her house was bombed and many drawings, prints, and documents were lost. She moved first to Nordhausen, then to Moritzburg, a town near Dresden, where she lived her final months as a guest of Prince Ernst Heinrich of Saxony. Kollwitz died just before the end of the war.

Kollwitz made a total of 275 prints, in etching, woodcut and lithography. Virtually the only portraits she made during her life were images of herself, of which there are at least fifty. These self-portraits constitute a lifelong honest self-appraisal; “they are psychological milestones”.

Partial biography is from wikipedia.

I decided just to do a self portrait and not make a commentary on anything political.  Although the more I think about it, I should’ve at least done a portrait of me in pain…crying or something.  I love the story of this artist’s life and I think her artwork is harrowingly beautiful and haunting.  I will see you tomorrow on Day 291!

Best,

Linda

Self-Portrait- Tribute to Kathe Kollwitz Linda Cleary 2014 Stain & Charcoal on Canvas

Self-Portrait- Tribute to Kathe Kollwitz
Linda Cleary 2014
Stain & Charcoal on Canvas

Side-View Self-Portrait- Tribute to Kathe Kollwitz Linda Cleary 2014 Stain & Charcoal on Canvas

Side-View
Self-Portrait- Tribute to Kathe Kollwitz
Linda Cleary 2014
Stain & Charcoal on Canvas

Close-Up 1 Self-Portrait- Tribute to Kathe Kollwitz Linda Cleary 2014 Stain & Charcoal on Canvas

Close-Up 1
Self-Portrait- Tribute to Kathe Kollwitz
Linda Cleary 2014
Stain & Charcoal on Canvas

Close-Up 2 Self-Portrait- Tribute to Kathe Kollwitz Linda Cleary 2014 Stain & Charcoal on Canvas

Close-Up 2
Self-Portrait- Tribute to Kathe Kollwitz
Linda Cleary 2014
Stain & Charcoal on Canvas

Close-Up 3 Self-Portrait- Tribute to Kathe Kollwitz Linda Cleary 2014 Stain & Charcoal on Canvas

Close-Up 3
Self-Portrait- Tribute to Kathe Kollwitz
Linda Cleary 2014
Stain & Charcoal on Canvas

 

Day 263- Rupprecht Geiger- Red is Life

It is Day 263 and I’m getting my blog done a little later than usual!  I had a busy day and just came back from watching Improvised Game of Thrones in the city.  It was great.  Doing my painting this morning was also great!  Join me in honoring Rupprecht Geiger today. 🙂

Rupprecht Geiger

Rupprecht Geiger

1099

Rupprecht Geiger: “441/66”, 1966. “

Rupprecht Geiger (26 January 1908 – 6 December 2009) was an abstract painter and sculptor from Munich, Germany. He is perhaps best known for his color field paintings and for his passion for the color red.

Geiger was born in Munich, the only child of painter Willi Geiger. Besides

WVG 126 (Mappe Rupprecht Geiger – Colour in the round) (1969), portfolio of 9 silkscreens

WVG 126 (Mappe Rupprecht Geiger – Colour in the round) (1969), portfolio of 9 silkscreens

Germany, the family spent time in Spain, and he also joined his father on trips to Morocco and the Canary Islands. It was on these trips that Geiger began painting.

From 1926 through 1935 he studied and taught architecture and art at academic institutions in Munich. From 1936 to 1940 he worked as an architect at several firms, also in Munich.

Rupprecht Geiger

Rupprecht Geiger

He was called up to fight in World War II and was at the Eastern Front in Poland and Russia, and then in 1943 and 1944 he was a war illustrator in the Ukraine and Greece. He exhibited his first abstract painting in 1948.

After the war, from 1949 to 1962 he was again active as an architect. In 1949, Geiger co-founded the Munich artists’ group ZEN 49. Hilla von Rebay chose to exhibit his artwork at the Museum for Non-Objective Painting (later the Guggenheim Foundation).

From 1965 to 1976, Geiger was professor of painting at Staatlichen Kunstakademie Düsseldorf.

Rupprecht Geiger, Dynamik der Farbe, 2006, 13 color serigraph

Rupprecht Geiger, Dynamik der Farbe, 2006, 13 color serigraph

His paintings are often concerned with the theme of color. In the 1950s, he particularly studied the color red. Geiger’s paintings are characterized by simple geometric forms (rectangles, ovals, circles), bright colors, and intense contrasts. The Dombergmuseum near Munich possesses a collection of his works.

Biography is from wikipedia.

“Red is life, energy, virility, power, love, warmth, strength. With its ability to stimulate, it has a powerful function.”- Rupprecht Geiger

I hope you enjoy my piece today and I’ll see you tomorrow on Day 264!

 

Best,

Linda

Rosa Kugel auf Rot mit gelben Streifen- Tribute to Rupprecht Geiger Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Rosa Kugel auf Rot mit gelben Streifen- Tribute to Rupprecht Geiger
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Side-VIew Rosa Kugel auf Rot mit gelben Streifen- Tribute to Rupprecht Geiger Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Side-VIew
Rosa Kugel auf Rot mit gelben Streifen- Tribute to Rupprecht Geiger
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 1 Rosa Kugel auf Rot mit gelben Streifen- Tribute to Rupprecht Geiger Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 1
Rosa Kugel auf Rot mit gelben Streifen- Tribute to Rupprecht Geiger
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 3 Rosa Kugel auf Rot mit gelben Streifen- Tribute to Rupprecht Geiger Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 3
Rosa Kugel auf Rot mit gelben Streifen- Tribute to Rupprecht Geiger
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Day 178- Gerhard Richter- “Art is the highest form of hope”

It’s Day 178 and I woke up early to do my painting and get things done before heading out tonight.  I’m still feeling a little tired from fighting some weird bug or insane allergies.  Join me in honoring Gerhard Richter today.

Gerhard Richter with a huge squeegee.

Gerhard Richter with a huge squeegee.

Gerhard Richter

Gerhard Richter

Gerhard Richter (born 9 February 1932) is a German visual artist and one of the pioneers of the New European Painting that has emerged in the second half of the twentieth century. Richter has produced abstract as well as photorealistic paintings, and also photographs and glass pieces. His art follows the examples of Picasso and Jean Arp in undermining the concept of the artist’s obligation to maintain a single cohesive style.

In October 2012, Richter’s Abstraktes Bild set an auction record price for a painting by a living artist at £21m ($34m). This was exceeded in May 2013 when his 1968 piece Domplatz, Mailand (Cathedral square, Milan) was sold for $37.1 million (£24.4 million) in New York.

Richter was born in Dresden, Saxony, and grew up in Reichenau, Lower Silesia, and in

Gerhard Richter

Gerhard Richter

Waltersdorf (Zittauer Gebirge), in the Upper Lusatian countryside. He left school after 10th grade and apprenticed as an advertising and stage-set painter, before studying at the Dresden Academy of Fine Arts. In 1948, he finished higher professional school inZittau, and, between 1949 and 1951, successively worked as an apprentice with a sign painter, a photographer and as a painter. In 1950 his application for tuition in the Dresden Academy of Fine Arts was rejected as “too bourgeois”. He finally began his studies at the Dresden Academy of Fine Arts in 1951. His teachers were Karl von Appen,Heinz Lohmar (de) and Will Grohmann.

In the early days of his career, he prepared a wall painting (Communion with Picasso, 1955) for the refectory of his Academy of Arts as part of his B.A. Another mural followed at the German Hygiene Museum entitled Lebensfreude (Joy of life), for his diploma and intended to produce an effect “similar to that of wallpaper or tapestry”.

Gerhard Richter Editions

Gerhard Richter Editions

Both paintings were painted over for ideological reasons after Richter escaped from East to West Germany two months before the building of the Berlin Wall in 1961; after German reunification two “windows” of the wall painting Joy of life (1956) were uncovered in the stairway of the German Hygiene Museum, but these were later covered over when it was decided to restore the Museum to its original 1930 state. From 1957 to 1961 Richter worked as a master trainee in the academy and took commissions for the then state of East Germany. During this time, he worked intensively on murals like Arbeiterkampf (Workers’ struggle), on oil paintings (e.g. portraits of the East German actress Angelica Domröse and of Richter’s first wife Ema), on various self-portraits and furthermore, on a panorama of Dresden with the neutral name Stadtbild (Townscape, 1956).

When he escaped to West Germany, Richter began to study at the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf under Karl Otto Götz. With Sigmar Polkeand Konrad Fischer (de) (pseudonym Lueg) he introduced the term Kapitalistischer Realismus (Capitalistic Realism) as an anti-style of art, appropriating the pictorial shorthand of advertising. This title also referred to the realist style of art known as Socialist Realism, then the official art doctrine of the Soviet Union, but it also commented upon the consumer-driven art doctrine of western capitalism.

Richter taught at the Hochschule für bildende Künste Hamburg and the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design as a visiting professor; he returned to the Kunstakademie Düsseldorf in 1971, where he was a professor for over 15 years.

Coming full-circle from his early Table (1962) in which he cancelled his photorealist image with haptic swirls of grey paint, in 1969, Richter

Artist Gerhard Richter at work, as seen in Corinna BelzÕs documentary GERHARD RICHTER PAINTING.  Courtesy of Kino Lorber.

Artist Gerhard Richter at work, as seen in Corinna BelzÕs documentary GERHARD RICHTER PAINTING. Courtesy of Kino Lorber.

produced the first of a group of grey monochromes that consist exclusively of the textures resulting from different methods of paint application.

In 1976, Richter first gave the title Abstract Painting to one of his works. By presenting a painting without even a few words to name and explain it, he felt he was “letting a thing come, rather than creating it.” In his abstract pictures, Richter builds up cumulative layers of non-representational painting, beginning with brushing big swaths of primary color onto canvas. The paintings evolve in stages, based on his responses to the picture’s progress: the incidental details and patterns that emerge. Throughout his process, Richter uses the same techniques he uses in his representational paintings, blurring and scraping to veil and expose prior layers. From the mid-1980s, Richter began to use a home-made squeegee to rub and scrape the paint that he had applied in large bands across his canvases. In the 1990s the artist began to run his squeegee up and down the canvas in an ordered fashion to produce vertical columns that take on the look of a wall of planks.

Gerhard Richter

Gerhard Richter

Richter’s abstract work is remarkable for the illusion of space that develops, ironically, out of his incidental process: an accumulation of spontaneous, reactive gestures of adding, moving, and subtracting paint. Despite unnatural palettes, spaceless sheets of color, and obvious trails of the artist’s tools, the abstract pictures often act like windows through which we see the landscape outside. As in his representational paintings, there is an equalization of illusion and paint. In those paintings, he reduces worldly images to mere incidents of Art. Similarly, in his abstract pictures, Richter exalts spontaneous, intuitive mark-making to a level of spatial logic and believability.

Firenze continues a cycle of 99 works conceived in the autumn of 1999 and executed in the same year and thereafter. The series of overpainted photographs, or übermalte Photographien, consists of small paintings bearing images of the city of Florence, created by the artist as a tribute to the music of Steve Reich and the work of Contempoartensemble, a Florence-based group of musicians.

After 2000, Richter made a number of works that dealt with scientific phenomena, in particular, with aspects of reality that cannot be seen by the naked eye. In 2006, Richter conceived six paintings as a coherent group under the title Cage, named after the American avant-garde composer John Cage. In May 2002, Richter photographed 216 details of his abstract painting no. 648-2, from 1987. Working on a long table over a period of several weeks, Richter combined these 10 x 15 cm details with 165 texts on the Iraq war, published in the German FAZ newspaper on March 20 and 21. This work was published in 2004 as a book entitled War Cut.

In November 2008, Richter began a series in which he applied ink droplets to wet paper, using alcohol and lacquer to extend and retard the

Gerhard Richter

Gerhard Richter

ink’s natural tendency to bloom and creep. The resulting November sheets are regarded as a significant departure from his previous watercolours in that the pervasive soaking of ink into wet paper produced double-sided works. Sometimes the uppermost sheets bled into others, generating a sequentially developing series of images. In a few cases Richter applied lacquer to one side of the sheet, or drew pencil lines across the patches of colour.

Since there is no such thing as absolute rightness and truth, we always pursue the artificial, leading, human truth. We judge and make a truth that excludes other truths. Art plays a formative part in this manufacture of truth.- Gerhard Richter

Art is the highest form of hope.- Gerhard Richter

Partial biography is from wikipedia.  I only included the “abstract” art section from his bio since it was so long and that was the work I focused on with my piece.

My squeegee work…much smaller than his squeegee...

My squeegee work…much smaller than his squeegee…

I hope you enjoy my piece today.  I bought a squeegee for just this occasion and for future painting that I may want to use it for.  I am loving using unlikely tools for creating these pieces.  I’ll see you tomorrow on Day 179…getting closer to the halfway mark!  Best, Linda

Abstract Blur- Tribute to Gerhard Richter Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Abstract Blur- Tribute to Gerhard Richter
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Side-View Abstract Blur- Tribute to Gerhard Richter Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Side-View
Abstract Blur- Tribute to Gerhard Richter
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 1 Abstract Blur- Tribute to Gerhard Richter Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 1
Abstract Blur- Tribute to Gerhard Richter
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 2 Abstract Blur- Tribute to Gerhard Richter Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 2
Abstract Blur- Tribute to Gerhard Richter
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 3 Abstract Blur- Tribute to Gerhard Richter Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 3
Abstract Blur- Tribute to Gerhard Richter
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Day 173- Willi Baumeister- Foundations of Art

It’s Day 173 and it’s a beautiful summer day out!  We did have a little ant party going on in my best girl roommate Karli’s kitchen this morning though.  I think it’s all under control now. 🙂  Other than that just painting and doing something exciting tonight.  Also getting the house tidy for the appraiser on Tuesday.  We just want to get it reappraised since we put so much work into it when we bought it.  Whew.  Join me in honoring Willi Baumeister today.  It was a challenge only because I wanted to do so much.

Willi Baumeister

Willi Baumeister

Composition in Blue- Willi Baumeister

Composition in Blue- Willi Baumeister

Willi Baumeister (January 22, 1889 – August 31, 1955) was a German painter, scenic designer, art professor, and typographer.

Willi Baumeister, born in Stuttgart in 1889, completed an apprenticeship as a

Willi Baumeister

Willi Baumeister

decorative painter in his native city from 1905 to 1907, followed by military service (fall 1907–1908). During his apprenticeship, Baumeister also began art studies at the Stuttgart Art Academy (Königlich Württembergische Akademie) (1905–1906), attended Robert Poetzelberger’s drawing class, and took additional lessons fromJosef Kerschensteiner. In 1906 he resumed his apprenticeship and, in 1907, completed the trade test.

Spiral on Yellow- Willi Baumeister

Spiral on Yellow- Willi Baumeister

Following his military service, Baumeister continued his studies at the art academy. Dismissed by his teacher Poetzelberger due to lack of talent, he switched into the composition class of Adolf Hölzel, with whom he studied until 1912, where he met his lifelong friend, Oskar Schlemmer. Baumeister took his first trip to Paris in 1911, successfully participated in a gallery exhibition in Zurich in 1912 and a year later participated in Der Erste Deutsche Herbstsalon (The First German Autumn Salon) in the Berlin gallery Der Sturm. There he met the

Fantasma Negro- Willi Baumeister

Fantasma Negro- Willi Baumeister

expressionist painter Franz Marc. In 1914 Baumeister had his first solo exhibition at Der Neue Kunstsalon (New Art Salon) in Stuttgart. In the same year, Adolf Hölzel arranged a commission for wall paintings at the Deutsche Werkbund-Ausstellung (German Werkbund Exhibition) in Cologne for Baumeister, Schlemmer, and Herman Stenner. Prior to being drafted into the army in the summer of 1914 (until 1918), Baumeister travelled to Amsterdam, London, and Paris. During the war, Baumeister met the painter Oskar Kokoschka and the architect Adolf Loos in Vienna in 1915. In 1916 he participated in the exhibition Hölzel und sein Kreis (Hölzel and his Circle) at the Art Association in Freiburg im Breisgau, which was subsequently shown at the Ludwig Schames Art Salon in Frankfurt am Main. In 1918, still prior to being discharged from military service, he threw an exhibition with his friend Oskar Schlemmer at the Galerie Schaller in Stuttgart. Baumeister and Schlemmer campaigned to bring Paul Klee to the Stuttgart Academy, which was rejected by the Academy. Klee, for his part, would have been willing to come. In 1919 Baumeister became a member of the Berlin artist association Novembergruppe (November Group). The group was founded by Max Pechstein in 1918, immediately following Germany’s capitulation and the fall of the monarchy. It remained one of the most important alliances of German artists until 1933.

Kessaua-Aru- Willi Baumeister

Kessaua-Aru- Willi Baumeister

In Stuttgart in 1919, Baumeister took up the initiative with Schlemmer and other artists to found the artist group Üecht (Alemannic: genuine, true), which he left in 1921. In 1919 he produced his first stage design, which was followed by seventeen others. In 1920 Baumeister completed his art studies, worked as an independent artist, and participated in exhibitions in Berlin, Dresden, and Hagen. His popularity and recognition abroad became evident in a joint exhibition with Fernand Léger in the Berlin gallery Der Sturm in 1922. During these years, Baumeister developed professional relationships with artists such as Paul Klee, Léger, Le Corbusier, Amédée Ozenfant, and Michel Seuphor. In 1924 several of his works were shown at the Erste Allgemeine Deutsche Kunstausstellung (First General German Art Exhibition) in Moscow and, in 1925, he participated in the Paris exhibition L’Art d’aujourd’hui (Art Today). Alongside his artistic work, he was also active in the area of commercial art and designed advertisements for numerous companies, such as Bosch and DLW (Deutsche Linoleumwerke)

In 1926 Willi Baumeister married the painter Margarete Oehm (1898-1978) and was

Gesto Cosmico- Willi Baumeister 1950

Gesto Cosmico- Willi Baumeister 1950

offered, in the same year, the opportunity to take part in the International Exhibition of Modern Art in New York, followed by a solo exhibition in Paris the following year, where he also participated in the Große Berliner Kunstausstellung (Great Berlin Art Exhibition) (with his own room), where he met Kasimir Malevich.

In 1927 Baumeister accepted a teaching post at the Frankfurt School of Applied Arts, later known the Städel. There he taught from 1928 a class in commercial art, typography, and textile printing. That very year, his daughter was born. The following year he turned down a position at the Bauhaus in Dessau. A member of the ring neue werbegestalter(Circle of New Commercial Designers) (chairman: Kurt Schwitters) since 1927, Baumeister joined the artist association Cercle et Carré (Circle and Square) in 1930. In the same year, he received the Württemberg State Prize for the painting Line Figure. After “Cercle et Carré”, he also became a member of the artist association “Abstraction-Création” inParis.

Willi Baumeister

Willi Baumeister

On the 31st of March 1933, following the National Socialist rise to power, Baumeister was dismissed from his professorship at the Städel. His colleague Professor Albert Windisch and Wilhelm Biering continued his lessons. Thereafter Baumeister earned his living mainly from commercial art, he was still however able to travel to Switzerland, Italy, and France. In the same year, his daughter Felicitas was born. In 1936 he was introduced by the Wuppertaler architect Heinz Rasch, with whom he work during the 1924 Exhibition in Stuttgart, to Dr. Kurt Herberts, the owner of a varnish factory in Wuppertal. He began working for the company in 1937, joining other artists ostracized by the National Socialist regime: Franz Krause, Alfred Lörcher, Georg Muche, and Oskar Schlemmer, and the art historian Hans Hildebrandt. That year five of his works were shown in the National Socialist exhibition Entartete Kunst (Degenerate art) in Munich.

Until 1941, when a ban on his paintings and exhibitions was issued by the National Arts Chamber, Baumeister still had many opportunities to exhibit his works abroad in Europe. Despite the prohibition and the constant surveillance, he still worked at the Herberts varnish factory, as well as on his art. In 1943, when a bomb attack rendered Wuppertal as well as Baumeister’s house in Stuttgart uninhabitable, he moved with his family to Urach in the Swabian Alps.

In 1945, after the end of the Second World War, Willi Baumeister completed his book Das Unbekannte in der Kunst (The Unknown in Art),

Willi Baumeister

Willi Baumeister

which was only published in 1947, even though he had completed the manuscript in 1943–44. In 1946 he received the position to teach a class in decorative paintings at the Stuttgart Academy of Arts and in 1947 resumed his exhibition activities. In 1949 he became the co-founder of the artist group Gegenstandlose (The Group of Nonrepresentational Artists), which threw its first exhibition called ZEN 49 in 1950. Here Baumeister met Fritz Winter, Ernst Wilhelm Nay, Paul Fontaine, and many others who worked in the field of fine arts after the end of the war and the dictatorship in Germany to forge a new beginning and connection to international developments. In his participation in the Erstes Darmstädter Gespräch (First Darmstadt Dialogue) in July 1950, at the exhibition Das Menschenbild in unserer Zeit (The Human Image of Our Time), Baumeister defended modern art against Hans Sedlmayr’s thesis of a “loss of the center” (“Verlust der Mitte”).

Henceforth until his death in 1955 Baumeister stood at the peak of his artistic career, which was demonstrated by his participation in many national and international exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale in 1948, the São Paulo Biennale (Brazil) in 1951 (where he received a prize for his painting Cosmic Gesture), and Younger European Artists at the Guggenheim Museum in New York in 1953. In 1955 Willi Baumeister retired (emeritus) from the Stuttgart Art Academy, although he still received a teaching contract for the following semester. On the 31st of August 1955, he died sitting with his brush in his hand in his atelier in Stuttgart.

Das schwarze Zelt by Willi Baumeister

Das schwarze Zelt by Willi Baumeister

Baumeister took part in his first exhibition in 1910, showing figurative works inspired by impressionism. His chief interest was even at this time already in cubism and Paul Cézanne, whose work remained important to him throughout his life. These influences of impressionism and cubism that shaped Baumeister’s early paintings played an essential role in his work until the end of the 1920s. On the one hand, his representational painting was increasingly reduced (abstracting and geometric) as it gained form and lost depth. Parallel to the paintings of his friend Oskar Schlemmer, Baumeister’s independent exploration of form and color emerged. Already around 1919, his teacher Adolf Hölzel wrote to him: “Out of all of us, you will be the one who will achieve the most.” Also worth noticing is that the idiosyncratic German path into modernism, expressionism, barely resonates at all in Baumeister’s work, even though he had met, for instance, Franz Marc earlier on, and was certainly acquainted with the works of the Brücke (Bridge) artists and those of the Blaue Reiter (Blue Rider).

After his return from the First World War, Baumeister rigorously developed his work further. Although one still finds figurative elements in his paintings, the forms grew increasingly geometric and took on a dynamic of their own, and Baumeister broke the traditional connection between form and color. Various work groups emerged at this time, including the relief-like wall pictures, and paintings with sports theme (as a symbol for modernity). In his painting, the grappling with shapes and material of the painting as well as the relationship between reality and representation became visible. Parallel to this development, nonrepresentational painting began to gain a foothold in works that centered on geometric shapes and their relationships to one another in the picture (e.g. Planar Relation of 1920). Baumeister’s lively exchange with other German and foreign artists must also be seen as vitally important in the consequent development of his work. Indeed, as it was for many of his fellow artists, posing such questions was part of the agenda of the modern age (for example, El Lissitzky, Kazimir Malevich, Wassily Kandinsky, Fernand Léger, Amédée Ozenfant, Le Corbusier, Paul Klee).

Towards the end of the 1920s, the shapes in Baumeister’s pictures grew softer. His paintings moved away from being oriented by the

Willi Baumeister Original-Serigraphie "Phantom II", 1951

Willi Baumeister Original-Serigraphie “Phantom II”, 1951

elementary shapes of the circle, triangle, and square towards organic forms. Although this development could also be observed concurrently in the work of other artists of his time, in Baumeister’s case, it was tied to his fascination for the prehistoric and archaic paintings. Baumeister intensely explored artifacts of early paintings and integrated this pictorial experience into his own painting. He identified the symbols, signs, and figures of cave painting as components of a valid archaic pictorial language that he used in his works. These included his increasing number of paintings in “oil on sand on canvas” that, in their materials, also approached the cave painting that Baumeister so admired (beg. ca. 1933). He himself collected examples of prehistoric findings, small sculptures, and tools, and occupied himself with cliff drawings that had been discovered in Rhodesia. This experience was undoubtedly important for Baumeister’s artistic disposition since he, evidently inspired by this rich store of prehistoric works, ultimately used extraordinarily reduced organic shapes for his “ideograms” (beg. ca. 1937). In these works he used a unique world of signs, which he saw as symbols for the laws of nature, their evolution, and human existence.

Willi Baumeister

Willi Baumeister

Baumeister’s artistic development was not interrupted when he lost his professorship at the Städel in Frankfurt in 1933. He continued to paint despite political persecution and economic difficulties. His work and its development are correspondingly diverse, even for the period after 1941, when he was imposed with an exhibition prohibition. While on the one hand his employment at the Dr. Kurt Herberts & Co. varnish factory in Wuppertal to research antique and modern painting techniques protected him politically, it also on the other hand gave him the opportunity to explore the fundamentals of painting, so that he could further his knowledge on the prehistoric cave painting techniques. At the same time, he tuned to Goethe’s theory of plant morphology. Out of this study the “eidos pictures” (eidos: idea) emerged: paintings that, unlike Baumeister’s ideograms, are rich in their variety and coloration. Moreover, the forms are organic, but seem to be less of symbols or signs, than images of simple plantlike and animal life forms. The pictures bear titles such as Rock GardenEidos, or Primordial Vegetable.

As an indefatigable researcher and collector, Baumeister also owned examples of African sculpture, in which he, as in the case of the prehistorical artifacts, saw universal images for life, development, and human existence. Correspondingly, their formal language entered Baumeister’s work in the early 1940s—highly abstracted, at first chromatically restrained (African Tale, 1942), and with time, became increasingly colorful and in part very complex in their formal design (Owambo 1944–1948). Both the titles and formal language reveal Baumeister’s preoccupation with other old (Latin American) cultures (‘Peruvian Wall, 1946, and Aztec Couple, 1948).

Willi Baumeister

Willi Baumeister

Another example of his search for the “foundations of art” is Baumeister’s transposition of the Gilgamesh Epic, one of the oldest surviving literary works. Therefore, Baumeister used his personal pictorial and sign language in his illustration of the narrative (beg. 1943), which resulted in an astonishingly unified cycle, which with his pictorial language came strikingly close to depicting the literary and linguistic effects(impression) of the epic. He also produced illustrations to texts from the Bible—Saul, Esther, Salome—as well as to William Shakespeare’s The Tempest.

In this way, Baumeister single-mindedly and successfully developed a very personal and impressive visual language that was and still is unique in the German art immediately after 1945. The national and international recognition that Willi Baumeister received in the postwar period was correspondingly high. But his artistic development did not stop there. On the one hand, he developed his painting further in a virtuosic manner and, what is more, combined the variety of his formation phases in many other pictures—in part into “overalls structures” that nonetheless still possessed a fundamental that was reminiscent of landscape imageries (Blue Movement, 1950). On the other hand, Baumeister also produced densely packed abstractions that, proceeding from a central form, characterized him as an outstanding “nonrepresentationalist.” These paintings became quite possibly the most famous of his works, and were immediately associated by a broad public with Baumeister (e.g. ARU 2, 1955). Even so, Baumeister did not limit himself to this late “trademark.” Multiform and multicoloured pictures emerged as well in the year of his death.

Biography is from wikipedia.

I hope you enjoy my painting for today!  It was challenging because I wanted to keep painting, but I’m working with a 10″ X 10″ canvas so I can only paint so much.  Some aspects of it I’m not too thrilled about.  I think I got impatient for layers to dry so it’s a little lumpy.  All in all it was fun.  I’ll see you tomorrow on Day 174.  Am I at the halfway mark yet?  I think that’s around Day 182…I’ll have to celebrate!  Only halfway?  I feel like I’ve been painting a lifetime already. 🙂  Best, Linda

Phantom!- Tribute to Willi Baumeister Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on canvas

Phantom!- Tribute to Willi Baumeister
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on canvas

Side-View Phantom!- Tribute to Willi Baumeister Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on canvas

Side-View
Phantom!- Tribute to Willi Baumeister
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on canvas

Close-Up 1 Phantom!- Tribute to Willi Baumeister Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on canvas

Close-Up 1
Phantom!- Tribute to Willi Baumeister
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on canvas

Close-Up 2 Phantom!- Tribute to Willi Baumeister Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on canvas

Close-Up 2
Phantom!- Tribute to Willi Baumeister
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on canvas

Close-Up 3 Phantom!- Tribute to Willi Baumeister Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on canvas

Close-Up 3
Phantom!- Tribute to Willi Baumeister
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on canvas

Day 119- Friedel Dzubas- Fields of Color

It’s Day 119 and I have a ton of house stuff happening right now.  They are still trying to install the vent hood and I’m waiting for the screen guy to show up.  I’d like to spend more time on my painting and blog, but gotta get life done. 🙂  Join me in celebrating Friedel Dzubas today.

Friedel Dzubas

Friedel Dzubas

Friedel Dzubas (born April 20, 1915 in BerlinGermany, died 1994 in New York) was a German-born American abstract painter.

Friedel Dzubas

Friedel Dzubas

Friedel Dzubas studied art in his native land before fleeing Nazi Germany in 1939 and settling in

Friedel Dzubas

Friedel Dzubas

New York City. In Manhattan during the early 1950s, he shared a studio with fellow abstract painter Helen Frankenthaler. He began exhibiting his Abstract expressionist paintings at this time. His work was included in the Ninth Street Show in New York City in 1951, and in group exhibitions at the Leo Castelli gallery, the Stable Gallery, and the Tibor de Nagy Gallery among others. After the Ninth Street Show annual invitational exhibitions were held at the Stable Gallery throughout the 1950s. The poster of the second New York Painting and Sculpture Annual at The Stable Gallery in 1953, included an introduction by Clement Greenberg:

In the 1960s he became associated with Color field painting and Lyrical Abstraction. He was included in Post-painterly abstraction a 1964 exhibition curated by Clement Greenberg. Dzubas was a friend of Clement Greenberg, who in turn introduced him to Jackson Pollock and other artists.

Friedel Dzubas

Friedel Dzubas

His large work (up to 24 feet (7.3 m) wide) became more fluid. During the last three decades of his career, Dzubas had more than sixty solo exhibitions around the world. He was represented by the André Emmerich gallery and Knoedler Contemporary Arts in New York for more than thirty years. In 1976 he settled in Massachusetts, but also painted and lived in New York City, where his paintings were regularly exhibited.

He used Magna paint an oil based acrylic paint. Magna was originally developed by

Friedel Dzubas

Friedel Dzubas

the paintmakers Leonard Bocour and Sam Golden for and also used by Morris Louis. Dzubas would apply thick layers of color over washes, scrubbing the paint into the unprimed canvas. Dzubas used staining, brushing and other ways of applying color. His paintings were generally large in size and scale, but he made many very small paintings as well.

Friedel Dzubas

Friedel Dzubas

Biography is from wikipedia.

Even though I was rushed today, I still had a wonderful time painting this piece.   I hope you enjoy it as well.  I will see you tomorrow on Day 120.  Best, Linda

Untitled 119- Tribute to Friedel Dzubas Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Untitled 119- Tribute to Friedel Dzubas
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Side-View Untitled 119- Tribute to Friedel Dzubas Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Side-View
Untitled 119- Tribute to Friedel Dzubas
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 1 Untitled 119- Tribute to Friedel Dzubas Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 1
Untitled 119- Tribute to Friedel Dzubas
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 2 Untitled 119- Tribute to Friedel Dzubas Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 2
Untitled 119- Tribute to Friedel Dzubas
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 3 Untitled 119- Tribute to Friedel Dzubas Linda Cleary 2014 Acrylic on Canvas

Close-Up 3
Untitled 119- Tribute to Friedel Dzubas
Linda Cleary 2014
Acrylic on Canvas