'Often Monumental in scale, their works are at times intense, spontaneous and deeply expressive. At others they are more contemplative, presenting large fields of colour that border on the sublime. These radical creations redefined the nature of painting and were intended not simply to be admired from a distance but as a two-way encounters between artist and viewer'
I recently went to see the 'Abstract Expressionist' show at the Royal Academy, I had been excited all year for this long awaited exhibition, and to be honest, it left me in complete awe, overwhelmed and speechless at the sheer energy, scale ,power and breadth of the art movement. It is truly a mind blowing, inspiring experience, where I fell in love all over again with my favourite artists, I've listed my favourite 5 inspiring Abstract Expressionist paintings from the must see show, (details at bottom of the post)
Here are my favourite 3 abstract expressionist paintings at the Royal Academy 'Abstract Expressionist show...
1. Williem De Kooning 'Woman as Landscape' 1965-66
2. Joan Mitchell Salut Tom, 1979 . The exhibition ends with the largest single work in the show by the influential female artist Joan Mitchell, which is a 4 part canvas referencing Monet's Nymphéas'. The use of light, scale and energy in this piece is incredible and literally adds light to the final room.
3. Mark Rothko ' No. 15, 1957. Going into a room dedicated to Mark Rothko's gigantic pulsating pieces can feel like going into the Notre Dame or an ancient temple, giving a feeling of transcendence and contemplation. On a side note Mark Rothko created murals for a Chapel in Houston, which he considered to be among his most important works, you can see the Rothko chapel here. Another Abstract expressionist painter Called Barnett Newman wrote this in his essay 'Sublime is now' on American Painters
“Instead of making cathedrals out of Christ, man, or ‘life,’ we are making it out of ourselves, out of our own feelings.”
royal academy, london - Abstract Expressionism - 24 September 2016 — 2 January 2017