Abstract Expressionism Essay

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Abstract Expressionism

The term Abstract Expressionism was used for the first time in 1919 to describe the work of Kandinsky, but is now used to define some post world war two art. In the 1940's in America, particularly New York artists were creating art in a new style one that shifted the art world's focus. Though they were not formally associated, these artists all shared some common ideas. This group was referred to as "The New York School" or "Abstract Expressionists". This type of art represented something substantial, as it is considered to be the first form of American art that was of international importance. There are many factors that led to its creation, previous art movements, the art happening in Europe at the time, and what was going on in the world.

Many of the artists that were part of this movement began in the 1930's. This was at the time after the great depression and the government had instated relief programs, which helped unemployed Americans and let many of these artists begin a career in art. During the depression there were two main art movements; Regionalism and Surrealism, however these did not satisfy this group of artists. One huge influence was the new accessibility to see European art. In 1929 the Museum of Modern Art opened and there was an increase in venues to where art was shown. However, the main event that occurred that influenced this movement was the war and then its aftermath. The artists saw the dark side of man and the vulnerability of humans and wanted to show this as well as their concerns through their art. After the war, there was even more direct contact with European artists and surrealism introduced more possibilities with their ideas about the subconscious.

The name Abstract Expressionism came about because the movement was thought of as a combination German Expressionism, Futurism, the Bauhaus and Synthetic Cubism. Basicly, in this type
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of art the artist uses form and...
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