Abstract-Expressionist Painting Journal

A blog-journal of abstract & expressionist painting, contemporary art, philosophy, and the future...




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Willem De Koonig

Abstract Art & Its Reason For Being
Art in which objects, people, and/or places are depicted in simplified arrangements of shapes, lines, textures, and/or colors. Abstract art may or may not bear a resemblance to its subject. "Paint is paint and canvas is canvas, they should not pretend to be otherwise." The cleverness in abstraction lies in the fact that the human mind attempts to interpret the abstraction, finding patterns and images that aren't really there. As a result, a good abstract painting will appear differently in the minds of individual viewers.

Here we have the real secret of abstract art; that it is a special way of tricking the brain into new and asymmetric patterns. The reason that you can call this a secret is because nobody really analyzed the potential purpose and effect of abstraction until I applied my medical and scientific knowledge to this field of painting. What I learned is that abstract art uniquely possesses the potential to create new and previously not experienced neural patterns and pathways as the brain of the viewer attempts to interpret and find meaning in the work. Therefore, we find that in well-crafted abstract art mind expansion becomes a true possibility.

Interpretation of abstract art has both an academic and a popular side. Academically, we look at abstraction for the use of color fields, symmetry and apparent planes. For the fan, however, interpretation is a lot more fun and involves finding the shapes created by ones own mind from the material provided by the artist.

Abstract Expressionism
Expressionism is a style of painting in which the emotional, non-objective qualities of an object are given preeminence. Abstract Expressionism takes all of the brakes off of the flow of human consciousness and creativity. In abstract expressionism the painter shows his personality through the use of color and shapes. This being the case, abstract expressionist art does not consist of painting an object or image, but is instead a study in color and interplay of paint and canvas. See also: Art Definitions.

Jackson Pollock : Lavender Mist Abstract Expressionism is generally divided into two major types:
(1) Action Painting strives to show paint texture and the movement of the artists. Jackson Pollock is an example of an Action Painter. He dripped and poured his paint to create his work.
(2) Color Field Painting is concerned only with shape and color and tries new and creative ways to express these basic elements. Among practitioners of this school, Mark Rothko stands out through his use of rectangles and colors in his paintings. Willem de Kooning and Jean Debuffet experimented in both sub-styles, and today Chriss Pagani : l'Estate we have Tracy Emin who primarily works in installations and Chriss Pagani who works in a subset the artist invented called object-oriented abstraction. See: Object-Oriented Abstraction.



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