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6 Posts

It's nothing in particular.

It's nothing in particular.
Don MacKinnon
Jun 18, 2014
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Nicolas De Staël - Le Couteaux de la Lumière - Jean-Louis Champromis
Pamela Talese


What lies between the two.

Nicolas de Staël’s career was brief but intense, spanning only about 15 years. He first began exhibiting in Europe in the 1940s, and by the 1950's was showing in New York City, almost two decades after Mark Rothko and others became a fierce presence in town. Like Rothko, de Staël was enthralled with color. He and Rothko also shared Russian heritage but from different ends of the social spectrum.

De Staël was one of the most influential and celebrated European painters of the post-War period. In the course of a tragically brief career (his years of depression ending in suicide when he was 41) he was a leading figure of what is now called the School of Paris. Hovering between figuration and abstraction, his paintings are marked by their heavily impastoed surface, their simplicity of composition, and a bold but sophisticated use of color.

This video is interesting in the way it employs photoshop (or whatever) to compose the paintings making the themes a little obvious. His later works are very powerful in person though somewhat more cacophonous than Rothko's large brooding tableaux of which I am a great fan.

This notion of being between two movements, two ways of seeing and gesturing evident everywhere in his painting, as the juxtaposition of abstract shapes of color creates the sense of space, place and light for which he is known.
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