Modern Artists Full List Modern Artists in Abstract Expressionism

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Modern Artists in Abstract Expressionism

Below are biographies and analysis of the work of the artists central to the Abstract Expressionism movement. Read more about the movement on the Abstract Expressionism Overview page.

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Abstract Expressionism: 33 of 332 Total Artists
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American Painter, Poet, Sculptor, Teacher, and Theoretician

Movements and Styles: Bauhaus, Geometric Abstraction

Born: March 19 1888 - Bottrop, Germany

Died: March 25 1976 - New Haven, CT, USA

Josef Albers was a German-born American painter and teacher. Celebrated as a geometric abstractionist and influential instructor at Black Mountain College, Albers directly influenced such artists as Rauschenberg, Twombly and Ray Johnson.

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American Painter

Movement: Abstract Expressionism

Born: June 11, 1912 - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Died: June 6, 1963 - New York, New York, USA

William Baziotes was a first generation Abstract Expressionist painter who worked in a Surrealist, lyrical style.

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American Painter and Collagist

Movements and Styles: Cubism, Collage, Harlem Renaissance

Born: September 2, 1911 - Charlotte, North Carolina, USA

Died: March 12, 1988 - New York, New York, USA

Romare Bearden celebrated the black American experience, which he integrated into greater American modernism. He found his own voice by creating collages made up of cut and torn photographs found in popular magazines that he then reassembled into visually powerful statements.

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American Filmmaker, Sculptor, Painter, and Printmaker

Movement: Abstract Expressionism

Born: April 16, 1927 - Rochester, Indiana

Died: December 21, 2011 - New York, New York, USA

John Chamberlain is best known for his sculptures made of crushed and twisted automobile parts, works that bring the formal qualities of Abstract Expressionist painting into three dimensions.

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American Painter

Movements and Styles: Abstract Expressionism, Color Field Painting

Born: May 6, 1926 - New Orleans, Louisiana

Ed Clark, a New Orleans-born painter, was an Abstract Expressionist artist who pioneered the use of shaped canvases in New York.

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American Art Critic and Painter

Movements and Styles: Abstract Expressionism, Proto-Feminist Artists

Born: March 12, 1918 - Brooklyn, New York

Died: February 1, 1989 - Southampton, New York

Elaine de Kooning was an important Abstract Expressionist painter and collagist whose work combines gestural energy with formalist investigations. She was married to the famous New York painter Willem de Kooning.

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Dutch-American Draftsman, Painter, and Sculptor

Movement: Abstract Expressionism

Born: April 24, 1904 - Rotterdam, The Netherlands

Died: March 19, 1997 - East Hampton, New York

Willem de Kooning, a Dutch immigrant to New York, was one of the foremost Abstract Expressionist painters. His abstract compositions drew on Surrealist and figurative traditions, and typified the expressionistic 'gestural' style of the New York School.

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American Painter

Movement: Abstract Expressionism

Born: May 3, 1922 - Syracuse, New York

Died: May 3, 1993 - New York, New York, USA

Painter, sculptor and poet Robert De Niro, Sr. was a substantial contributor to post-war American art for his dedication to painterly representation. Vivid, innovative, and representational work distinguished De Niro as a distinct figure in the Abstract Expressionist movement.

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American Painter

Movement: Abstract Expressionism

Born: April 22, 1922 - Portland, Oregon

Died: March 20, 1993 - Berkeley, California

Richard Diebenkorn was an American painter who helped pioneer the California-based movement of Abstract Expressionism, and later the Bay Area Figurative Movement. In all his work, Diebenkorn used the natural environment as his chief inspiration and applied soft, naturalistic color fields to the canvas.

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German Painter and Sculptor

Movements and Styles: Dada, Surrealism

Born: April 2, 1891 - Bruhl, Germany

Died: April 1, 1976 - Paris, France

Max Ernst was a German Dadaist and Surrealist whose paintings and collages combine dream-like realism, automatic techniques, and eerie subject matter.

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Armenian-American Draftsman and Painter

Movements and Styles: Expressionism, Surrealism, Abstract Expressionism

Born: April 15, 1904 - near Van, Turkey

Died: July 21, 1948 - Sherman, Connecticut

Arshile Gorky was an Armenian-born American painter and was a major influence on the development of Abstract Expressionism. In his own art he fused elements of Cubism, Surrealism and Expressionism, and was close with key figures central to New York's burgeoning abstrct art scene, such as John Graham, Stuart Davis and Willem de Kooning.

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American Painter

Movement: Abstract Expressionism

Born: March 14, 1903 - New York, New York

Died: March 4, 1974 - New York, New York

Adolph Gottlieb was an Abstract Expressionist painter who commonly used grids, pictographs, and primitive symbols in his work.

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Ukranian-American Painter

Movements and Styles: Surrealism, Cubism, Abstract Expressionism

Born: Disputed (August 7, 1881 or 1886-1888) - Kiev, Ukraine

Died: 1961 - London, UK

John Graham was a Ukrainian-born American painter and a key figure in the development of Abstract Expressionism. Never adopting a singular style in his own art, Graham tutored many young abstract artists on the tenets of Cubism and Surrealism, of which he was an expert. Willem de Kooning credited Graham as the person who discovered Jackson Pollock.

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American Painter

Movement: Abstract Expressionism

Born: June 27, 1913 - Montreal, Canada

Died: June 7, 1980 - Woodstock, New York

Philip Guston was a Canadian painter during the 20th century. Initially associated with the New York School of abstract art, Guston famously abandoned pure abstraction in the 1950s and turned to figurative art and quasi-abstract cartoon imagery. His later work, for which he is best known, was a major influence on the development of Neo-Expressionism in the U.S.

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American Painter

Movement: Abstract Expressionism

Born: March 28, 1922 - Newark, New Jersey

Died: November 15, 2008 - Baltimore, Maryland

Grace Hartigan was an American painter and an important figure among the second generation of Abstract Expressionists. Her paintings are characterized by their rich color and bold mixture of abstract and figurative styles.

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German-American Painter and Theoretician

Movement: Abstract Expressionism

Born: March 21, 1880 - Weissenberg, Bavaria

Died: February 17th, 1966 - New York City, NY

German-born American painter, art teacher and theorist. Hofmann matured as an artist in 1904-14 in Paris, where he met many of the greatest artists of that time. After he emigrated to America in the early 1930s he enjoyed a prominent career as a teacher, powerfully influencing many Abstract Expressionists with his understanding of European modernism.

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American Painter

Movement: Abstract Expressionism

Born: May 23, 1910 - Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania

Died: May 13, 1962 - New York, New York

Franz Kline was an American abstract painter and one of the pioneers of Abstract Expressionism. His signature black-and-white abstractions were inspired by Japanese calligraphy, and inspired a later generation of artists who created Minimalism.

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American Painter

Movement: Abstract Expressionism

Born: October 27, 1908 - Brooklyn, New York

Died: June 19, 1984 - Queens, New York

Lee Krasner was an American abstract painter and a prominent first-generation Abstract Expressionist. A student of Hans Hofmann's, and a pioneer in the all-over technique of painting that later influenced color-field artists such as Frankenthaler, Louis, and her husband Jackson Pollock.

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American Sculptor

Movements and Styles: Abstract Expressionism, The New York School and Abstract Expressionism

Born: May 4, 1913 - Alexandria, Egypt

Died: December 30, 2003 - The Springs, East Hampton, New York

Ibram Lassaw was an American abstract sculptor, associated with multiple movements such as Cubism, Surrealism and Constructivism. Lassaw's sculpture famously incorporated mixed metals, intricately woven to create what many perceived as abstract paintings in three dimensions.

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American Painter

Movement: Abstract Expressionism

Born: July 23, 1909 - Harlem, New York

Died: August 27, 1979 - Harlem, New York

Norman Lewis, a leading African-American painter, was an important Abstract Expressionist, who also used representational strategies to focus on black urban life and his community's struggles.

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Abstract Expressionism: 33 of 332 Total Artists

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