Abstract expressionism

Abstract expressionism


Although the term "abstract expressionism" was first applied to American art in 1946 by the art critic Robert Coates, it had been first used in Germany in 1919 in the magazine "Der Sturm", regarding German Expressionism. In the USA, Alfred Barr was the first to use this term in 1929 in relation to works by Wassily Kandinsky. [Hess, Barbara; "Abstract Expressionism", 2005]


, especially his "white writing" canvases, which, though generally not large in scale, anticipate the "all over" look of Pollock's drip paintings.

The movement's name is derived from the combination of the emotional intensity and self-denial of the German Expressionists with the anti-figurative aesthetic of the European abstract schools such as Futurism, the Bauhaus and Synthetic Cubism. Additionally, it has an image of being rebellious, anarchic, highly idiosyncratic and, some feel, rather nihilistic. [Shapiro, David/Cecile (2000): Abstract Expressionism. The politics of apolitical painting. p. 189-190 In: Frascina, Francis (2000): Pollock and After. The critical debate. 2nd ed. London: Routledge] In practice, the term is applied to any number of artists working (mostly) in New York who had quite different styles, and even applied to work which is not especially abstract nor expressionist. Pollock's energetic "action paintings", with their "busy" feel, are different both technically and aesthetically, to the violent and grotesque "Women" series of Willem de Kooning (which are figurative paintings) and to the rectangles of color in Mark Rothko's, Color Field paintings (which is not what would usually be called expressionist and which Rothko denied was abstract), yet all three are classified as abstract expressionists.

Abstract expressionism has many stylistic similarities to the Russian artists of the early twentieth century such as Wassily Kandinsky. Although it is true that spontaneity or the impression of spontaneity characterized many of the abstract expressionists works, most of these paintings involved careful planning, especially since their large size demanded it. With artists like Paul Klee, Wassily Kandinsky, Emma Kunz, and later on Rothko, Barnett Newman and Agnes Martin, abstract art clearly implied expression of ideas concerning the spiritual, the unconscious and the mind. [ Catherine de Zegher and Hendel Teicher (eds.). "3 X Abstraction". NY: The Drawing Center & /New Haven: Yale University Press. 2005.]

Why this style gained mainstream acceptance in the 1950s is a matter of debate. American social realism had been the mainstream in the 1930s. It had been influenced not only by the Great Depression but also by the Social Realists of Mexico such as David Alfaro Siqueiros and Diego Rivera. The political climate after World War II did not long tolerate the social protests of these painters. Abstract expressionism arose during World War II and began to be showcased during the early forties at galleries in New York like "The Art of This Century Gallery". The McCarthy era after World War II was a time of extreme artistic censorship in the United States. Since the subject matter was often totally abstract it became a safe strategy for artists to pursue this style. Abstract art could be seen as apolitical. Or if the art was political, the message was largely for the insiders. [Serge Gibalt. How New York Stole the Idea of Modern Art, University of Chicago Press, 1983.] Fact|date=March 2007

While the movement is closely associated with painting, and painters like Arshile Gorky, Franz Kline, Clyfford Still, Hans Hofmann, Willem de Kooning, Jackson Pollock and others, collagist Anne Ryan and sculpture and certain sculptors in particular were also integral to Abstract expressionism. [Marika Herskovic, [http://www.worldcatlibraries.org/oclc/50253062&tab=holdings "American Abstract Expressionism of the 1950s An Illustrated Survey,"] (New York School Press, 2003.) ISBN 0-9677994-1-4 pp12-13] David Smith, and his wife Dorothy Dehner, Herbert Ferber, Isamu Noguchi, Ibram Lassaw, Theodore Roszak, Phillip Pavia, Mary Callery, Richard Stankiewicz, Louise Bourgeois, and Louise Nevelson in particular were some of the sculptors considered as being important members of the movement. In addition, the artists David Hare, John Chamberlain, James Rosati, Mark di Suvero, and sculptors Richard Lippold, Herbert Ferber, Raoul Hague, George Rickey, Reuben Nakian, and even Tony Smith, Seymour Lipton, Joseph Cornell, and several others [Marika Herskovic, [http://www.worldcatlibraries.org/oclc/50666793&tab=holdings "New York School Abstract Expressionists Artists Choice by Artists,"] (New York School Press, 2000.) ISBN 0967799406 p.11-12] were integral parts of the Abstract expressionist movement. Many of the sculptors listed participated in the Ninth Street Show [Marika Herskovic, [http://www.worldcatlibraries.org/oclc/50666793&tab=holdings "New York School Abstract Expressionists Artists Choice by Artists,"] (New York School Press, 2000.) ISBN 0967799406 p.11-12] the famous exhibition curated by Leo Castelli on East Ninth Street in New York City in 1951. Besides the painters and sculptors of the period the New York School of Abstract expressionism also generated a number of supportive poets, like Frank O'Hara and photographers like Aaron Siskind and Fred McDarrah, (whose book "The Artist's World in Pictures" documented the New York School during the 1950s), and filmmakers notably Robert Frank as well.

Although the abstract expressionist school spread quickly throughout the United States, the major centers of this style were New York City, and the San Francisco Bay area of California.

Art critics of the post-World War II era

In the 1940s there were not only few galleries (The Art of This Century) but also few critics who were willing to follow the work of the New York Vanguard.There were also a few artists with a literary background, among them Robert Motherwell and Barnett Newman who functioned as critics as well.

While New York and the world were yet unfamiliar with the New York avant-garde by the late 1940s, most of the artists who have become household names today had their well established patron critics: Clement Greenberg advocated Jackson Pollock and the color field painters like Clyfford Still, Mark Rothko, Barnett Newman, Adolph Gottlieb and Hans Hofmann. Harold Rosenberg seemed to prefer the action painters like Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline and Louis Schanker. Thomas B. Hess, the managing editor of "ARTnews", championed Willem de Kooning.

The new critics elevated their proteges by casting other artists as "followers" [Thomas B. Hess, "Willem de Kooning", George Braziller, Inc. New York, 1959 p.:13] or ignoring those who did not serve their promotional goal.

As an example, in 1958, Mark Tobey "became the first American painter since Whistler (1895) to win top prize at the Venice Biennale. New York's two leading art magazines were not interested. "Arts" mentioned the historic event only in a news column and "ARTnews" (Managing editor: Thomas B. Hess) ignored it completely. The "New York Times" and "Life" printed feature articles." [William C. Seitz, [http://www.worldcatlibraries.org/oclc/5750568&referer=brief_results Mark Tobey by William C. Seitz, The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1962.] ]

Barnett Newman, a late member of the Uptown Group, wrote catalogue forewords and reviews, and by the late 1940s became an exhibiting artist at Betty Parsons Gallery. His first solo show was in 1948. Soon after his first exhibition, Barnett Newman remarked in one of the Artists' Session at Studio 35: "We are in the process of making the world, to a certain extent, in our own image." [Barnett Newman Selected Writings and Interviews, (ed.) by John P. O'Neill, pgs.: 240-241, University of California Press, 1990] Utilizing his writing skills, Newman fought every step of the way to reinforce his newly established image as an artist and to promote his work. An example is his letter in April 9, 1955, "Letter to Sidney Janis: — it is true that Rothko talks the fighter. He fights, however, to submit to the philistine world. My struggle against bourgeois society has involved the total rejection of it." [Barnett Newman Selected Writings Interviews, (ed.) by John P. O'Neill, p.: 201, University of California Press, 1990.]

Strangely the person thought to have had most to do with the promotion of this style was a New York Trotskyite Clement Greenberg. As long time art critic for the "Partisan Review" and "The Nation", he became an early and literate proponent of abstract expressionism. The well-heeled artist Robert Motherwell joined Greenberg in promoting a style that fit the political climate and the intellectual rebelliousness of the era.

Clement Greenberg proclaimed abstract expressionism and Jackson Pollock in particular as the epitome of aesthetic value. It supported Pollock's work on formalistic grounds as simply the best painting of its day and the culmination of an art tradition going back via Cubism and Cézanne to Monet, in which painting became ever 'purer' and more concentrated in what was 'essential' to it, the making of marks on a flat surface. [Clement Greenberg, "Art and Culture Critical essays", ("The Crisis of the Easel Picture"), Beacon Press, 1961 pp.:154-157]

Jackson Pollock's work has always polarised critics. Harold Rosenberg spoke of the transformation of painting into an existential drama in Pollock's work, in which "what was to go on the canvas was not a picture but an event". "The big moment came when it was decided to paint 'just to paint'. The gesture on the canvas was a gesture of liberation from value — political, aesthetic, moral." [Harold Rosenberg, "The Tradition of the New," Chapter 2, "The American Action Painter", pp.:23-39]

One of the most vocal critics of abstract expressionism at the time was "New York Times" art critic John Canaday. Meyer Shapiro, and Leo Steinberg along with Clement Greenberg and Harold Rosenberg were important art historians of the post-war era who voiced support for abstract expressionism. During the early to mid sixties younger art critics Michael Fried, Rosalind Krauss and Robert Hughes added considerable insights into the critical dialectic that continues to grow around abstract expressionism.

Others, such as British comedian/satirist Craig Brown, have been astonished that decorative 'wallpaper' could gain such a position in art history alongside Giotto, Titian and Velázquez.

Abstract expressionism and the Cold War

Since mid 1970s it has been argued by revisionist historians that the style attracted the attention, in the early 1950s, of the CIA, who saw it as a representative of the USA as a haven of free thought and free markets, as well as a challenge to both the socialist realist styles prevalent in communist nations and the dominance of the European art markets. The book by Frances Stonor Saunders [http://www.ratical.org/ratville/CAH/CIAcultCW.html] , "The Cultural Cold War—The CIA and the World of Arts and Letters", [http://www.worldcatlibraries.org/wcpa/oclc/43114251?loc=#tabs ] and other publications such as "Who Paid the Piper?: CIA and the Cultural Cold War", detail how the CIA financed and organized the promotion of American abstract expressionists via the Congress for Cultural Freedom from 1950–67.Against this revisionist tradition, an essay by Michael Kimmelman, chief art critic of "The New York Times", called "Revisiting the Revisionists: The Modern, Its Critics and the Cold War", argue that much of this information (as well as the revisionists' interpretation of it) concerning what was happening on the American art scene during the 1940s and 50s is flatly false, or at best (contrary to the revisionists' avowed historiographic principles) decontextualized Fact|date=May 2008. Other books on the subject include "Art in the Cold War" by Christine Lindey, which also describes the art of the Soviet Union at the same time; and "Pollock and After" edited by Francis Frascina, which reprinted the Kimmelman article Fact|date=May 2008.


After World War II

The Post war period left the capitals of Europe in upheaval with an urgency to economically and physically rebuild and to politically regroup. In Paris (the former center of European culture and the former capital of the art world) the climate for art was a disaster. Important collectors, dealers, and modernist artists, writers, and poets had fled Europe for New York and America. The Surrealists, and modern artists from every cultural center of Europe had fled the onslaught of the Nazis for safe haven in the United States. Many of those that didn't flee perished. A few artists, notably Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, and Pierre Bonnard, remained in France and survived.

In Europe after the war there was the continuation of Surrealism, Cubism, Dada and the works of Matisse. Also in Europe, Art brut, [ [Jean Dubuffet: "L’Art brut préféré aux arts culturels" [1949] (=engl in: "Art brut. Madness and Marginalia", special issue of "Art & Text", No. 27, 1987, p. 31-33)] and Tachisme (the European equivalent to Abstract expressionism) took hold of the newest generation. Serge Poliakoff, Nicolas de Staël, Georges Mathieu, Vieira da Silva, Jean Dubuffet, Yves Klein and Pierre Soulages among others are considered important figures in post-war European painting.

Pollock, Krasner, Hofmann

The 1940s in New York City heralded the triumph of American Abstract expressionism, a modernist movement that combined lessons learned from Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso, Surrealism, Joan Miró, Cubism, Fauvism, and early Modernism via great teachers in America like Hans Hofmann from Germany and John D. Graham from Russia. Graham's influence on American art during the early 1940s was particularly visible in the work of Arshile Gorky, Willem de Kooning and Jackson Pollock. American artists also benefited from the presence of Piet Mondrian, Fernand Leger, Max Ernst and the André Breton group, Pierre Matisse's gallery, and Peggy Guggenheim's gallery "The Art of This Century", as well as other factors. Hans Hofmann in particular as teacher, mentor and artist was both important and influential to the development and success of Abstract Expressionism in the United States. Among Hofmann's protege's was Clement Greenberg who became an enormously influential voice for American painting and among his students was Lee Krasner who introduced her teacher Hans Hofmann to Jackson Pollock her husband.

Pollock and Abstract influences

During the late 1940s Jackson Pollock's radical approach to painting revolutionized the potential for all Contemporary art that followed him. To some extent Pollock realized that the journey toward making a work of art was as important as the work of art itself. Like Pablo Picasso's innovative reinventions of painting and sculpture near the turn of the century via Cubism and constructed sculpture, Pollock redefined what it was to produce art . His move away from easel painting and conventionality was a liberating signal to the artists of his era and to all that came after. Artists realized that Jackson Pollock's process—the placing of unstretched raw canvas on the floor where it could be attacked from all four sides using artist materials and industrial materials; linear skeins of paint dripped and thrown; drawing, staining, brushing; imagery and non-imagery—essentially blasted artmaking beyond any prior boundary. Abstract expressionism in general expanded and developed the definitions and possibilities that artists had available for the creation of new works of art.

The other Abstract expressionists followed Pollock's breakthrough with new breakthroughs of their own. In a sense the innovations of Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline, Mark Rothko, Philip Guston, Hans Hofmann, Clyfford Still, Barnett Newman, Ad Reinhardt, Richard Pousette-Dart, Robert Motherwell, Peter Voulkos and others opened the floodgates to the diversity and scope of all the art that followed them. Rereadings into abstract art, done by art historians such as Linda Nochlin, [Nochlin, Linda, Ch.1 in: "Women Artists at the Millennium" (edited by C. Armstrong and C. de Zegher) MIT Press, 2006.] Griselda Pollock [Pollock, Griselda, "Encounters in the Virtual Feminist Museum: Time, Space and the Archive". Routledge, 2007.] and Catherine de Zegher [De Zegher, Catherine, and Teicher, Hendel (eds.), "3 X Abstraction". New Haven: Yale University Press. 2005.] critically shows, however, that pioneer women artists who have produced major innovations in modern art had been ignored by the official accounts of its history.

Action painting and Color field

The style was widespread from the 1940s until the early 1960s, and is closely associated with abstract expressionism (some critics have used the terms action painting and abstract expressionism interchangeably). A comparison is often drawn between the American action painting and the French tachisme.

The term was coined by the American critic Harold Rosenberg in 1952 [cite web
url = http://www.poetrymagazines.org.uk/magazine/record.asp?id=9798
title = "The American Action Painters"
accessmonthday=20 August
accessyear = 2006
author = Harold Rosenberg
last = Rosenberg
first = Harold
publisher = poetrymagazines.org.uk
] and signaled a major shift in the aesthetic perspective of New York School painters and critics. According to Rosenberg the canvas was "an arena in which to act". While abstract expressionists such as Jackson Pollock, Franz Kline and Willem de Kooning had long been outspoken in their view of a painting as an arena within which to come to terms with the act of creation, earlier critics sympathetic to their cause, like Clement Greenberg, focused on their works' "objectness." To Greenberg, it was the physicality of the paintings' clotted and oil-caked surfaces that was the key to understanding them as documents of the artists' existential struggle.

Rosenberg's critique shifted the emphasis from the object to the struggle itself, with the finished painting being only the physical manifestation, a kind of residue, of the actual work of art, which was in the act or process of the painting's creation. This spontaneous activity was the "action" of the painter, through arm and wrist movement, painterly gestures, brushstrokes, thrown paint, splashed, stained, scumbled and dripped. The painter would sometimes let the paint drip onto the canvas, while rhythmically dancing, or even standing in the canvas, sometimes letting the paint fall according to the subconscious mind, thus letting the unconscious part of the psyche assert and express itself. All this, however, is difficult to explain or interpret because it is a supposed unconscious manifestation of the act of pure creation. [based (very) loosely on a lecture by Fred Orton at the Uni of Leeds and H. Geldzahler, "New York Painting and Sculpture: 1940-1970, NY 1969"] Abstract expressionism has an image of being rebellious, anarchic, highly idiosyncratic and, some feel, rather nihilistic. In practice, the term is applied to any number of artists working (mostly) in New York who had quite different styles, and even applied to work which is not especially abstract nor expressionist. Pollock's energetic action paintings, with their "busy" feel, are different both technically and aesthetically, to the violent and grotesque "Women" series of Willem de Kooning. (As seen below in the gallery) "Woman V" is one of a series of six paintings made by de Kooning between 1950 and 1953 that depict a three-quarter-length female figure. He began the first of these paintings, "Woman I," collection: The Museum of Modern Art, New York City, in June 1950, repeatedly changing and painting out the image until January or February 1952, when the painting was abandoned unfinished. The art historian Meyer Schapiro saw the painting in de Kooning's studio soon afterwards and encouraged the artist to persist. De Kooning's response was to begin three other paintings on the same theme; "Woman II," collection: The Museum of Modern Art, New York City, "Woman III," Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art, "Woman IV," Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Missouri. During the summer of 1952, spent at East Hampton, de Kooning further explored the theme through drawings and pastels. He may have finished work on "Woman I" by the end of June, or possibly as late as November 1952, and probably the other three women pictures were concluded at much the same time. [ [http://www.nga.gov.au/International/Catalogue/Detail.cfm?IRN=47761&BioArtistIRN=25281&MnuID=2&GalID=1] National Gallery of Australia] The "Woman series" are decidedly figurative paintings. Another important artist is Franz Kline, as demonstrated by his painting "Number 2," 1954 (see above) as with Jackson Pollock and other Abstract Expressionists, was labelled an "action painter because of his seemingly spontaneous and intense style, focusing less, or not at all, on figures or imagery, but on the actual brush strokes and use of canvas.

Automatic writing was an important vehicle for action painters Franz Kline in his black and white paintings, Jackson Pollock, Mark Tobey and Cy Twombly who used gesture, surface, and line to create calligraphic, linear symbols and skeins that resemble language, and resonate as powerful manifestations from the collective unconscious. [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collective_unconscious] Robert Motherwell in his "Elegy to the Spanish Republic" series also painted powerful black and white paintings using gesture, surface and symbol evoking powerful emotional charges.

While other action painters notably Willem de Kooning, Arshile Gorky Norman Bluhm, Joan Mitchell, and James Brooks (painter) (see gallery) used imagery via either abstract landscape or as expressionistic visions of the figure to articulate their highly personal and powerful evocations. James Brooks' paintings were particularly poetic and highly prescient in relationship to Lyrical Abstraction that became prominent in the late 1960s and the 1970s. [The Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art, "Lyrical Abstraction", exhibition: April 5 through June 7, 1970, "Statement of the exhibition"]

Clyfford Still, Barnett Newman, Adolph Gottlieb (see gallery) and the serenely shimmering blocks of color in Mark Rothko's work (which is not what would usually be called expressionist and which Rothko denied was abstract), are classified as abstract expressionists, albeit from what Clement Greenberg termed the Color field direction of abstract expressionism. Both Hans Hofmann (see gallery) and Robert Motherwell (gallery) can be comfortably described as practitioners of action painting and Color field painting. In the 1940s Richard Pousette-Dart's tightly constructed imagery often depended upon themes of mythology and mysticism; as did the paintings of Adolph Gottlieb, and Jackson Pollock in that decade as well.

Color Field painting initially referred to a particular type of abstract expressionism, especially the work of Mark Rothko, Clyfford Still, Barnett Newman, Robert Motherwell, Adolph Gottlieb Ad Reinhardt and several series of paintings by Joan Miró. Art critic Clement Greenberg perceived Color Field painting as related to but different from Action painting. The Color Field painters sought to rid their art of superfluous rhetoric. Artists like Robert Motherwell, Clyfford Still, Mark Rothko, Adolph Gottlieb, Hans Hofmann, Helen Frankenthaler, Sam Francis, Mark Tobey (see gallery) and especially Barnett Newman (see below) and Ad Reinhardt used greatly reduced references to nature, and they painted with a highly articulated and psychological use of color. In general these artists eliminated recognizable imagery. In the case of Rothko and Gottlieb sometimes using symbol and sign as replacement of imagery. Certain artists quoted references to past or present art, but in general color field painting presents abstraction as an end in itself. In pursuing this direction of modern art, artists wanted to present each painting as one unified, cohesive, monolithic image.

In distinction to the emotional energy and gestural surface marks of Abstract Expressionists such as Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning, the Color Field painters initially appeared to be cool and austere, effacing the individual mark in favor of large, flat areas of color, which these artists considered to be the essential nature of visual abstraction, along with the actual shape of the canvas, which later in the 1960s Frank Stella in particular achieved in unusual ways with combinations of curved and straight edges. However Color Field painting has proven to be both sensual and deeply expressive albeit in a different way from gestural Abstract expressionism.

Although Abstract expressionism spread quickly throughout the United States, the major centers of this style were New York City and California, especially in the New York School, and the San Francisco Bay area. Abstract expressionist paintings share certain characteristics, including the use of large canvases, an "all-over" approach, in which the whole canvas is treated with equal importance (as opposed to the center being of more interest than the edges. The canvas as the "arena" became a credo of Action painting, while the "integrity of the picture plane" became a credo of the Color field painters.

In the 1960s after abstract expressionism

In abstract painting during the 1950s and 1960s several new directions like Hard-edge painting and other forms of Geometric abstraction, as a reaction against the subjectivism of Abstract expressionism began to appear in artist studios and in radical avant-garde circles. Clement Greenberg became the voice of "Post-painterly abstraction;" by curating an influential exhibition of new painting that toured important art museums throughout the United States in 1964. Color field painting, Hard-edge painting and Lyrical Abstraction [Aldrich, Larry. Young Lyrical Painters, Art in America, v.57, n6, November-December 1969, pp.104-113.] emerged as radical new directions.


Canadian artist Jean-Paul Riopelle (1923-2002) helped introduce abstract impressionism to Paris in the 1950s. Michel Tapié's groundbreaking book, "Un Art Autre" (1952), was also enormously influential in this regard. Tapié was also a curator and exhibition organizer who promoted the works of Pollock and Hans Hofmann in Europe. By the 1960s, the movement's initial affect had been assimilated, yet its methods and proponents remained highly influential in art, affecting profoundly the work of many artists who followed. Abstract Expressionism preceded Tachisme, Color Field painting, Lyrical Abstraction, Fluxus, Pop Art, Minimalism, Postminimalism, Neo-expressionism, and the other movements of the sixties and seventies and it influenced all those later movements that evolved. Movements which were direct responses to, and rebellions against abstract expressionism began with Hard-edge painting (Frank Stella, Robert Indiana and others) and Pop artists, notably Andy Warhol, Claes Oldenberg and Roy Lichtenstein who achieved prominence in the US, accompanied by Richard Hamilton in Britain. Robert Rauschenberg and Jasper Johns in the US formed a bridge between abstract expressionism and Pop art. Minimalism was exemplified by artists such as Donald Judd, Robert Mangold and Agnes Martin.

However, many painters, such as Fuller Potter, Jane Frank (a pupil of Hans Hofmann), and Elaine Hamilton continued to work in the abstract expressionist style for many years, extending and expanding its visual and philosophical implications, as many abstract artists continue to do today.

Major paintings and sculpture

List of abstract expressionists

Major artists

*Significant artists whose mature work defined American Abstract Expressionism:
*Charles Alston
*William Baziotes
*Norman Bluhm
*Louise Bourgeois
*James Brooks
*Hans Burkhardt
*Jack Bush
*Alexander Calder
*Nicolas Carone
*John Chamberlain
*Elaine de Kooning
*Willem de Kooning
*Robert De Niro, Sr.
*Richard Diebenkorn
*Enrico Donati
*Friedel Dzubas
*Norris Embry
*Jimmy Ernst
*Herbert Ferber
*Jane Frank
*Helen Frankenthaler
*Sam Francis
*Michael Goldberg
*Arshile Gorky
*Adolph Gottlieb
*Cleve Gray
*Philip Guston
*Elaine Hamilton
*David Hare
*Grace Hartigan
*Hans Hofmann
*Paul Jenkins
*Franz Kline
*Albert Kotin
*Lee Krasner
*Ibram Lassaw
*Norman Lewis
*Richard Lippold
*Seymour Lipton
*Morris Louis
*Conrad Marca-Relli
*Nicholas Marsicano
*Joan Mitchell
*Robert Motherwell
*Louise Nevelson
*Barnett Newman
*Isamu Noguchi
*Kenzo Okada
*Ray Parker
*Jackson Pollock
*Fuller Potter
*Richard Pousette-Dart
*Ad Reinhardt
*Milton Resnick
*George Rickey
*Jean Paul Riopelle
*William Ronald
*Mark Rothko
*Theodore Roszak
*Anne Ryan
*Louis Schanker
*Jon Schueler
*David Smith
*Theodoros Stamos
*Hedda Sterne
*Clyfford Still
*Mark di Suvero
*Mark Tobey
*Bradley Walker Tomlin
*Jack Tworkov
*Cy Twombly
*Esteban Vicente
*Emerson Woelffer
*Hale Woodruff
*Taro Yamamoto
*Manouchehr Yektai

Other artists

*Significant artists whose mature work relates to American Abstract Expressionism:
*Karel Appel
*William Brice
*Charles Ragland Bunnell
*Mary Callery
*Alfred L. Copley aka (L. Alcopley)
*Jean Dubuffet
*Sam Gilliam
*Hans Hartung
*Gino Hollander
*Jasper Johns
*Karl Kasten
*John Levee
*Knox Martin
*Georges Mathieu
*Herbert Matter
*Ludwig Merwart
*Jan Müller
*Robert Natkin
*Jules Olitski
*Irene Rice-Pereira
*Robert Rauschenberg
*Larry Rivers
*Aaron Siskind
*Pierre Soulages
*Nicolas de Staël
*Frank Stella
*Stuart Sutcliffe
*Antoni Tàpies
*Nína Tryggvadóttir
*Ulfert Wilke
*Zao Wou Ki



* Craven, David, [http://www.worldcatlibraries.org/oclc/39523558&tab=holdings "Abstract expressionism as cultural critique: dissent during the McCarthy period"] (Cambridge ; New York: Cambridge University Press, 1999.) ISBN 0-521-43415-7
* Marika Herskovic, [http://www.worldcatlibraries.org/oclc/50253062&tab=holdings "American Abstract Expressionism of the 1950s An Illustrated Survey,"] (New York School Press, 2003.) ISBN 0-9677994-1-4
* Marika Herskovic, [http://www.worldcatlibraries.org/oclc/50666793&tab=holdings "New York School Abstract Expressionists Artists Choice by Artists,"] (New York School Press, 2000.) ISBN 0-9677994-0-6


* Saunders, Frances Stonor, [http://www.worldcatlibraries.org/oclc/43114251&referer=brief_results "The cultural cold war: the CIA and the world of arts and letters"] (New York: New Press: Distributed by W.W. Norton & Co., 2000) ISBN 1-56584-596-X
* O'Connor, Francis V. [http://www.worldcatlibraries.org/oclc/165852&referer=brief_results "Jackson Pollock"] [exhibition catalogue] (New York, Museum of Modern Art, [1967] ) OCLC 165852
* "The Philosophy and Politics of Abstract Expressionism 1940-1960" Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, United Kingdom, 2000 ISBN 0-521-65154-9
* Tapié, Michel. [http://www.worldcatlibraries.org/oclc/62515192&referer=brief_results "Hans Hofmann: peintures 1962 : 23 avril-18 mai 1963."] (Paris: Galerie Anderson-Mayer, 1963.) [exhibition catalogue and commentary] OCLC: 62515192
* Tapié, Michel. [http://www.worldcatlibraries.org/oclc/30601793?tab=details "Pollock"] (Paris, P. Facchetti, 1952) OCLC: 30601793

Quotations about abstract expressionism

*Abstract Expressionist value expression over perfection, vitality over finish, fluctuation over repose, the unknown over the known, the veiled over the clear, the individual over society and the inner over the outer.
**"William C. Seitz,American artist and art historian"

ee also

Related styles, trends, schools, or movements

*Abstract Art
*Abstract Imagists
*Action painting
*American Abstract Artists
*Color field painting
*Lyrical Abstraction
*New York School
*Post-painterly abstraction
*History of painting

Other related topics

* [http://www.louisschanker.info/tendisc.htm The Ten Whitney Dissenters]
*Ismail Gulgee (artist whose work reflects abstract expressionist influence in South Asia during the Cold War, especially 'action painting')
*Michel Tapié (critic and exhibition organizer important to the dissemination of abstract expressionism in Europe, Japan, and Latin America)
*Bluebeard (novel) - Bluebeard by Kurt Vonnegut is a fictional autobiography written by fictional Abstract Expressionist Rabo Karebekian.

External links

* [http://ah.brookes.ac.uk/conferences/1956legacies/resources/1956programme2.pdf Programme of September 2004 Conference at Oxford Brookes University, UK: "1956: Legacies of political change in art and visual culture"] , listing (on page 2) a presentation by Rasheed Araeen entitled "The Cold War, Abstract Expressionism and the Presence of the American Artist, Elaine Hamilton, at the Time of the CIA's Supported Military Coup in Pakistan in 1957"
* [http://www.terraingallery.org/Jackson-Pollock-Ambition-DK.html Jackson Pollock]
* [http://www.louisschanker.info Louis Schanker]
* [http://www.aestheticrealism.org/Philip_Guston/Philip_Guston.html Philip Guston]
* [http://www.perlefine.com Perle Fine]
* [http://www.albertkotin.com Albert Kotin]
* [http://www.terraingallery.org/Art-Talks-Archive.html Terrain Gallery]
* [http://www.americanabstractartists.org American Abstract Artists]
* [http://rutgerspress.rutgers.edu/acatalog/__Abstract_Expressionism_2651.html Abstract Expressionism by Joan Marter]
* [http://www.clyffordstillmuseum.org/ Clyfford Still Museum]

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