PAINTING BETRAYAL AND ALCOHOLISM – Willem de Kooning, forcing the traits in figurative and abstract mode

WILLEM DE KOONING 1/3 – He worked in a paint company attending evening classes at the art school in Rotterdam and the academies of Brussels and Antwerp. In 1926, this DutchAmerican man travelled as a stowaway illegally to US. Since 1928, he began painting still lifes and compositions with figures, which reflect the school of Paris. Starting from 1935 he began to devote himself exclusively to painting. Since 1940 he began his most original research (one, which prevailed abstract expressionism) with a network of black stripes, which enveloped figures, forcing the traits, that remained recognizable in figurative and abstract mode.

WILLEM DE KOONING 2/3 – In 1948 took place his first solo exhibition. His paintings were reflecting the impact of Pablo Picasso and Joan Miró and became one of the leading exponents of Abstract Expressionism (especially ”action painting”). Famous are his series of figures of women with neurotic faces, bodies almost indistinguishable from the overlapp of the strokes. Since 1950, his creativity begins to change, he devoted exclusively to the topic of women, with dramatic and cruel reality.

WILLEM DE KOONING 3/3 – In 1957, after years of betrayals and problems with alcoholism, he was separated from his wife Elaine Marie Catherine Fried. He moved to Long Island, where he continued to paint women. Violence and unrest almost disappeared in his later works, which are full of color and radiance. Because of his degenerative disease and the abuse of alcohol, even art critics now argue over, how to evaluate his recent eighty works.

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