Tag Archives: Abstract expressionism

today’s birthday: Willem de Kooning (1904)


 

Willem de Kooning (1904)

De Kooning was a Dutch-American painter who became a leader of abstract expressionism, the New York-based school of painting that rejected naturalistic content. Examples of this period include his dramatic Black Paintings, which were black-and-white artworks created from enamel and oil paints. His later work became increasingly figurative, as is seen in his The Woman series of the 1950s, and was both criticized and lauded. In what unusual way did de Kooning immigrate to the US? More… Discuss

 

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Today’s Picture: January 1, 1892, after two years of construction, the U.S. Immigration Service opened Ellis Island in New York Harbor



On January 1, 1892, after two years of construction, the U.S. Immigration Service opened Ellis Island in New York Harbor, a new facility for ‘processing’ immigrants. Formerly used as a munitions dump and landfill, Ellis Island was designed, its architects claimed, to handle more than 8,000 newcomers a day. Orderly lines funneled bewildered immigrants past doctors and officials who examined them for signs of disease. The physically and mentally ill were refused admittance, forcing thousands of families to make the difficult decision to return home with a relative refused entry or push on without them. A final brusque interview by an immigration official determined whether the newcomers had already been promised jobs. About 80 percent of those who entered Ellis Island received landing cards permitting them to board ferries for New York City. In the 1890s, 75 percent of all immigrants entered the United States through Ellis Island. – See more at: http://www.historynet.com/picture-of-the-day#sthash.yUdRynY2.dpuf

TODAY’S BIRTHDAY: JACKSON POLLOCK (1912)


After working on the Federal Art Project—a US program for the unemployed during the Great Depression—Pollock began developing the abstract, expressive style that made him a symbol of artistic revolt. Influenced by surrealism, Pollock energetically dripped paint in complicated linear patterns onto enormous canvases placed on the floor. Unlike most artists, Pollock was a celebrity during his lifetime, which was cut short by a car crash. Jackson was his middle name. What was his first name? More… Discuss

 

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