02 art in America after wwII

02 art in America after wwII


today this lecture is going to talk
specifically about post work hard in new york so that may be postwar period that
i was talking about with you about mister nineteen forty-five after how things have changed across the globe because of world war
two now we’re gonna get into the nitty-gritty of what’s going on in
america in postwar arts and i’ve got a couple of basic comments to make about the
aftermath of world war two in the excuse me in the nineteen forty three nineteen forties henry luce
who is the publisher of time dubbed the twentieth century the
american century he’d made this argument that because americans have been victorious in world
war two because there was this huge kind of economic boom going on in
america as a result of the war because american enterprise industry
were thriving at because america had become basically
in charge of rebuilding under the marshall plan parts of germany and your attention america had become dominant and he made
his argument that this twenty centuries going to be the century for america and
this really has held true that american ascended to eight superpower position really in the
aftermath of world war two economically and politically and although of course that’s been shifting in recent years as
we get globalization all of that at one of the effects of the american
century in this global predominance of america was the art world really shifted its focus in its at the center traditionally parents had been the grill at the center for cutting edge thinking about art and styles of art now that will cutting-edge is moving to new york one of the reasons for this is because
there are a number of european artists who had fled the warhead flare hitler had fled the
nazis who ended up in new york and in america so that the whole generation of
important cutting-edge artists from europe had
ended up in that in the states and so that’s one of the reasons we also have new york is the center of
the economic center of the world there is also the emergence of this very exciting postwar painting phenomenon movement in art called abstract
expressionism that was grounded both in their european phiri that was coming
across the atlantic and the influence of this boulder
generation about on guard artists can also in this world striving to come up with a very american style of p_t_ and in fact one of the canonical
histories outhouse new york every hot abstract expressionism emerge then
became this globally dominant style for a while very
influential oppressor at the world is actually through the book is actually
titled have new york’s stole the idea of modern hearty this is uh… was written about fifteen years ago it’s
a standard work on the history of post work he reads it is to get your sense of
how the feeling was at the time that the
sort of all of a sudden these upstart americans
come out of nowhere and there’s this whole new focus at the center for the art so what will look at today is this manifestation america postwar
arts day umbrella term for this group of painters defense these needs mostly peters really very prominent the post-war period there
called the abstract expressionist and they have several different names
network warned over time as how to point out because there are
certain interchangeable there sometimes called the new york
school immortal there l school schedule c_ they have some might
distinct styles individually it’s more that they’re united by a kind
of philosophy about arkin expression that you also see abstract expressionism
abbreviated as have x they’re sometimes called the american
school or action painting we are going to look really get to me samper’s out asap expressionism that gesture last reaction at pages like
jackson pollock and bill in the coming and the color of your painting barnett
newman and mark brocco we’re going examined four peters there are many more peters
who actually prominent in this school sodas so-called school but which is going to look at some
representative people because these guys and they are actually all guys here these guys are really at the forefront
and they are the most widely publicized and very influential of these abstract
expressionist figures and what they are thinking about him talking
about will be again intense effort percolate through
contemporary art another thing that will look at it just considering that kind of were out of the nineteen fifties in
america in you get a little flavor of this to
you if you watch madmen which is more about sixties advertising
on madison avenue but it’s the same general kind of culture x at these guys are coming out
of has a very very pronounced adam set of gender expectations that
differences between what was possible for an expected of men and women in the post-war period part of this has
to do with how dimensional gender roles have really
been upset by world war two u_s_ men went off to fight women stepped into factories women play
professional baseball they did all this kind of stuff that was normally not considered to be part
of that you’ve probably been and did it well and so it was very
threatening with all these guys come back from the war one of the things that
happens is women are sort of told point-blank you know i know you’ve been
working in this decade but now there’s a guy home so he needs a job in you need
to go back to the kitchen and and dot kind of gender role expectations staff it’s general in the culture is
something that also manifests itself in the art at the abstract expressionist
in fact pollack including are both mary in the fifties to abstract expressionist
painters who actually see when we’re talking
about them in the few photographs of them uh… intend it to you end up being in
the background not because they necessarily wanted to
right because you know when a newspaper photographer came by to
photograph that peter uh… the peter’s wife is not considered
to be a peter anyway will get into that a little bit
more here there’s a photograph of very famous
photograph of this group of abstract expressionist painters that as you can see x-cart who said it’s like to talk a little bit
peter rasa bowles is the nickname for this photograph an arrest will persist someone who’s you irritable and angry so you got this group of really angry young men here as you can see john gates mails except for one woman there in the
back jackson pollock is and in the second row from the back sitting there candid looking is over his
shoulder add-ons at flag the arrest of those n yes mostly the arrest of those are young white male painters and that was
pretty much the definition of a peter and this plane there’s another woman who will look at a later is it
peter in the nineteen fifties as well nameless at marion shapiro she her husband got there and i think is
at the same time moved to new york city in disappear in the late nineteen forties although they both had m_s_a_’s shapiro says she could not find a job except as
working as a secretary while her husband was hired a tenure-track position to
teach painting uh… in college and it wasn’t that they had different
credentials they have the same m_s_a_ from the scene university it was that
there was simply an accepted hierarchy you know men were apt to be
professionals of women were to stay at home and you can try to get this playing out a little bit in this photo
of the rascals as indicator will look at later a guy
named norman lewis who was also an abstract expressionist style painter in
the nineteen fifties he was african-american and uh… although he was friends with this
entire group of people ads were many of the women who have unit to serve
took a back seat or when he came to doing publicity
photos are things like that it wasn’t amin he just was not considered part of
the group so it’s very kind of typical of the nineteen fifties so what i want to do now is what the peking to have a couple of these
painters and make some comments about how abstract expressionism explodes onto
the scene appear first paining a look at here is
this gaining by jackson pollock it’s from nineteen forty cents a little bit
early every time i really want to consider but you can give you a sense of
the direction the pollack is going jackson pollock actually started training with a realistic
american realist painter named thomas hart benton back in the thirties but a forty since moving and more
abstract expresso abstract directions as you can see here he was paining cobb
male and female which is referencing architects right male and female has gender opposites who nanded son mass and logic versus emotion uh… these kind of buying the reactors
issues what’s considered to be archetypal email an architect week he was very interested in ecology and and alice’s he was very
interested in for a late and carl tilton and in this respect he’s really taking a
cue from kinds of interest that the surrealist
painters have had earlier in the twentieth century and he
was influenced by these ideas he also happen to be going through analysis himself at this
point in time freudian analysis is a very intense loan process where you meet with an
analyst three times that we can go through
discussing your childhood and archetypal moments of your childhood
where you go through urinal retentive stages are potty
training rico through this edibles at your play an acouple stage where you
want to mir your mother and get rid of your father uh… allot free in theory has been
somewhat questioned over time but i mean this is very predominant in the nineteen
forties pollack is belonging onto some trend that we’ve
already seen into european art i’ll just remind you hear of sublime miro’s carnival are looking this is something we looked at last time uh… briefly just as an example of
automatic dr answer realist intense at captions self-consciously
heat here’s another forties painting by
jackson pollock this one is called woman cuts the circle and it’s
here are the same kind of thing where you’re getting etc some figured elements approach towards some kind of
abstraction i think you can probably see the influence of salvador dali as well
as food in a row indicating like this the interesting thing that’s how it does here is that is kind
of injecting in the american stir american flavor into this painting colors of the painting and the subject
of the painting are both geron friend north american and native american indian mythology nobleman uh… is also tied to this idea that you know women
being associated with and the night and emotion and men being associated
with this san and arctic dat and light this is again kind of trying to explore these
universal themes these scenes about things about the same conscience the sort of archetypal uh… getting at deeper trees and deeper meanings in his
peak where talk really makes the break
through the changes his painting is in the later nineteen forties so yeah i’m
showing you his painting called four thousand five this is from nineteen forty seven it is at currently at museum of modern art in new york city
security go it up this isn’t pretty large painting about fifty one inches tall by thirty
inches wide so it’s a fairly big you know this it is a uh… here is that includes a lot of non-traditional items so it stayed canvas that has not only oil paint on it but also nails tax in bought new skis cigarettes matches and other objects
that are in fact it into the surface and are meant to you make bme nina texture of the overall heating it’s almost like it pollack was trying to do some sort of
upholds practice here where he’s in adding something to the painting you
don’t necessarily see on the surface it helps to give the painting texture it also helps to uh… include some sort
of kidney beans into the key thing here’s just a close-up you can see it
diamond that it’d be painted four thousand five year and then you can see
others all this very thickly imposter heat that’s that that’s being laid down on the
campus this is the first i have what becomes
pollack’s signature style where sometimes called repeating sar action
e_t_’s and he will take this idea of a fully abstract canvas on which recording of his movement as a painter and his pics but his sort of internal expression
coming out and being recorded on campus and this is the first to be speaking
sitting in this is what he will become most known for and here are just a couple of years
later s pollak has gone and working in his
technique he produces more of these paintings
terry large-scale even larger than all other than that excuse me four thousand
five so here as one of his paintings from nineteen
fifties israelis breakthrough year in his break three years where he is captured the art world’s imagination
that these really side can take enormous p_d_’s if u c_n_n_ look at once it covers usually museums that will
cover an entire wall of the gallery and he stand within a couple feet of it fills out the retired vision this is uh… one of his more famous paintings and and
from nineteen fifty lavender menace yesh pollak has abandoned any kind of peace or painting
which he had started with earlier on his career and he’s started lately canvases on the and using a whole host of unusual or or
atypical materials for making paintings that are enormously this so first of all he doesn’t use stretched canvas anymore uses an industrial sort of what’s called dot clock it’s the kind of
stuff used to make sales for sailboats with so he’s using an industrial material pouring and mammal pete uh… house heat the kind of auto body
paint at fort used stuff that you can get in gallon sizes steffi he’d get cheaper a step that was
very quickly as well as traditional oil he also stopped using api prostates he
would instead of using regular people as he would take the campaigns uh… poor directly from the canopy sometimes he
would punch a hole in the cannon diluted to rip that way you take a turkey paster ends working
time the canvas he would take fed by the end of an old
brass and get back into the campaign finance fling it onto the campus the idea of being that he would walk around in this
enormous cannabis dripping in splashing paint aspin was struck him as a sort of choreographed demands for a performance and he compared this incident the kind of activity that you see c_n_n_’s doing in the american cnp
convertibles so he had grown up in cody wyoming he
really played up the idea that he was this western american cowboy and that kind of figure and he actually
said you know one of the reasons that i paint such big canvasses is because and american i grew up in the west edges feel more at home in a large states so really getting away from traditional oil paintings that kinda stuff even if
it’s a realistic time where you have admittedly small stretched canvas that
would be putting on an easel and then dabbing at deign to lead with traditional oil paints this was meant to
be a much more three and expressive macho sort of painting style you have to send you a couple of stills
for a very famous heated parents t_v_ documentary done in october of nineteen fifty when
pollock was working on another one of these very large canvases so you can see
there he is akbar unimpeded that would become known
as often driven there are too sweet also in blackboard some clips from hot embers are from december
constantly documentary very famous documentary is what you watch because it
has quotes from politics shows him actually
moving around the campus computing this is you know uh… just to get a essense of how
pollack was working koreamed dripping splashing walking
around the campus he made a big deal out of this idea that
he needed a big space to work and he needed a space that he could be uh… completely at easing and he says and you know the put speed and force the
paint because i’m a four anne-maree needs i feel near more a part
of the painting since this way i can walk around network from the foresight
to be bitterly in the p this here is the painting that he created
during the filming out that documentary sat called autumn rhythm this one’s at the metropolitan museum of
art and a habit that shot here in a minute
of what it looks like in person it’s two
hundred and seven inches approx and i forget how many inches but you can see that it could mean it
doesn’t translate so well to the screen here it’s a really saggy addict heating that’s is m that is meant to fill your entire range of vision and again part of this comes from the ideas of the surrealists an
automatic to riding and letting your subconscious could bleed through and not
have any sort of conscious controls over it partly he said it came from the idea of native american cn pagers in
the west so there is a scary shade mystic performance element too doing a painting like this as well is this idea that what he’s
trying to do is capture an experiance or two make something that is a painting just about itself it’s not
a painting that’s about literal psychological symbolism it’s not a painting that telling you the
story it is the kind of record of his experience of creating the
keating now that’s not to say that he did this
with complete lack of control and he often was very insistent in interviews talking
about how he was doing this spontaneously but that
doesn’t mean he was doing it without anne idea of where he was going or without
any choices being made he was very insistent
that this was something that was not necessarily planned it was meant to be
you know and catching experience being but it wasn’t meant to be chaotic wasn’t
meant to be completely brandon either these paintings were when they did when
he appeared in public in galleries like peggy
guggenheim’s gallery part of the century i think you know jsp less and he also park in self had this kind of dominating
personality he was very much melanie was a hard drinker and he’d like to be kind of roughly like
to cultivate this tough guy nonverbal sort of uh… almost wrandell asked personality in fact
there’s a famous story about him getting really really target peggy
guggenheim’s house one night and urinating in her fireplace instead of
going into the bathroom to urinate uh… the kind of thing that sacked people and seemed to be kind of outside the
pale really living up to this idea of the
east sf the artists you is outside any normal person walk
conventions wonder at satisfaction as peter actually his
wife got to know him during this time said that when she first saw his paintings they
seemed like something new he’s she said he seemed like my mental drawings are
maybe painting with the immediacy of drawing or some new category of art now there is a picture of autumn rhythm installed on wall in the
gallery see you can see how if you’re standing anywhere near it it would
really take up your whole line of vision and it becomes the kind of experience in
another itself uh… testified that people are
resistant to jackson pollock aides say things like in this is a very common
thing that uh… reaction people have a swell you know like him to do that and i just say i understand where this
comes from because obviously you’ve got this kind of painting that
seems to take no technique at all but i would atwood just say one thing he ought to do is
purple actually see pollack in person his father soap is sponsoring as it always does every semester a trip
to museum is probably the art institute of
chicago and there’s a pot painting in the art institute there aren’t many up right now because
they’re going through renovations but i highly recommend that you go n_c_i_ pollack in person and stand in front of it stand close enough
to it that you can really kind of start to look at the surface texture these are very tactful paintings their
theory three-dimensional because there are many
many ways it painted sometimes as in the case of full seven five other objects embedded in these p_d_’s they are visually quite powerful used to be a skeptic myself but the more
that i’ve seen of these pollack paintings in person i have to tell you
they do have some kind of visual presence and i find to be you know people often try to recreate jackson
pollock paintings operate just don’t come off as
successfully than ever big awaited his paintings are there never as densely layered and
complicated and doesn’t have to be your favorite
kind of art but before you throw the baby out with the bath water keeping in
mind when it was he was trying to do in his paintings and it’s kind of people overall experiential moment you’re supposed to
have in front of the painting like this before you just dismiss it as something just anybody can do just given a chance out here by the way couple close-ups of sections about everything so you can see
that there’s all kinds of interesting stuff getting stuff into the key in this and later
peter that they’re very very textural uh… there’s a lot going on one of your assignments this week is
also to read an interview with the curator at mama deals with these paintings and have to
conserve them and talking about what he’s learned about jackson pollack’s technique some interesting insights
there in thinking about whether or not this is completely random
whether or not any sort of way what the abstract expressionist we’re
doing in the materials that reusing things like that is not a good quote by the way from
holland he says i’m very representation of some of the
time and a little all the time but when you’re working out of your unconscious
figures are bound to emerge painting is a state of being paintings self-discovery every good artist paint what he is so in other words these are placards of as and psyche him as a human being and as a person having an experience of painting and he also stress that he w did not premeditate his paintings they were not random or chaotic or accidental as he
says i can control the flow of heat here is no accident and here is just decided to avoid a
pilot’s paintings there is a a security guard standing next to the pain every person
just to show you how deep and extra least meetings are so they’re not black and the surfaces the almost become
like levels cultures when you look at them a couple of more comments to make about
jackson pollock here it is day nineteen forty nine really famous two-page spread from life
magazine texan pollak you see the greatest living peter in the
united states and their it’s hollick c_n_n_ din
looking sort of macho in you did wearing jeans this is not what radical to pass i know but in the nineteen fifties we read she aids was a deliberate statement aligning
yourself with the kind of rough and tumble element of
society somebody who was working class somebody
who was uh… is a little bit like i don’t know
what day fashion equivalent would be today but it was deans were any kind of cutting-edge rough-and-tumble a little bit dangers kind of thing to
wear alright believe it or not you know so there is in his jeans whose work jacket looking a little bit talks standing in front of a mural he painted
for peggy guggenheim and then this life magazine article goes
on to talk about you know the new york art world really loves this
guy and here’s the kind of stuff he paints
so nineteen forties and fifties emaina agata jackson pollock was pretty
famous you know life magazine with sort of the upscale version of people
magazine so he’s pretty famous to be featured in the pages here uh… knows a little bit and ambivalence time magazine also featured jackson
pollock and make of him jack the director as a kind of joking nickname based upon
this idea of gesture or painting anyway so he becomes quite famous he’s
quite appealing to the eat those of the time here on the left is that people believe
the photo of jackson pollack at you would think that he was out on a ranch
in cody wyoming driving his old track riding around in um… you know at
pickup in doing hard farm labor uh… actually this was taking at his
house on long island at a time when he was moving or when he was living on long
island and going into the city on the subway
three times a week two have that cycle in our system and right there is a is a photo publicity photo of marlon brando who’s
kind of the quintessential nineteen fifties movie icon very kind of um… and if he was usda screen idols today barry barry cancer med well-built and um… and featured in many roles where he was
very masculine and kind of macho and even violent and so you can see where
there’s a little bit of this rudy nonverbal uh… rough-and-tumble search sleeves and work those kind of
guy uh… that day jackson park is cultivating that same
kind of image polly klaas actually heavy drinker and he died at the eight uh… and what was it forty five i think in the nineteen
fifties in it car crash she’d been drinking anti
wrapped his car around tree uh… and that only seems to have grant uh… the mythology of jackson
pollack as a matter of fact uh… you know other screen idols and fifties did the
same kind of thing jeans demand country wept there is this whole generation of
tragically doomed move fast drying out and leave a
good-looking parks kind of mad and so that really fat into something people in the fifties seem to really
neat uh… i’ll get one other thing i wanted
to mention about pollack and that the abstract expressionist is that this was as was nineteen fifties culture at very
kind of mail complicated very mail world and is the reader couple quotes from women who were artists who were either mary tyler artists who were in this new
york scene drinking acted them cedar tavern uh… or were single women who were
trying to be part of the art scene is times and here what’s

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