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Abstract expressionism & abstract expressionism

Abstract Expressionism, Expressionism & Abstractionism

steps, differences of expressionism, abstractionism and abstract expressionism

Differences there are and how to recognize the three currents that influenced the 900′: Expressionism, Abstractionism and Abstract Expressionism.

Ravi Alisha actionpainting abstract expressionism
Ravi Alisha abstract expressionism


Expressionism was born around the early 1900′ in France with the Fauves (belves), Germany with Die Brücke (the Punte) and contrasted with the objectivity of Impressionism.
It creates a revolution of language, produces a rebellion of the spirit against matter, and thus we speak of introspection: the“eyes of the soul.”

Impressionism represents a kind of motion from outside to inside, so it was objective reality that imprinted itself on the artist’s subjective consciousness while expressionism constitutes the reverse motion, from inside to outside: from theartist’ssoul directly into reality, without mediation.

The inner eye replaces the outer eye by creating. The nature of expressionism is rich in social content and dramatic testimony to reality. The German reality of the early 20th century is the bitter reality of war, of political contradictions, loss of ideal values, and bitter class struggles, and these were precisely the main and painful themes of the expressionist artists. The theoretical and cultural premises of Expressionism lie in the thought of Sigmund Freud(psychoanalysis, unconscious) “from the inside out” and French philosopher Henri Bergson (“vital impulse,” “intuitionism”).

howl munch expressionism
howl munch expressionism


Abstractionism is an artistic movement that originated in the early 20th century in areas of Germany quite far apart, where it developed without common intentions. More than a movement, it is an artistic current that takes on the meaning of “not real.”

Abstract art is that which does not represent reality, but creates images that express concepts through the combination of shapes, colors and lines. Abstractionism uses a visual language of shapes, colors and lines with the aim of creating a composition that can exist with a degree of independence from visual references in the world.

In philosophy, theirrationalism of Sigmund Freud and Nietzsche asserted itself, as opposed to the serenity of the Belle époque.

The path that led to ‘abstractionism has its origins in Symbolism, which evoked sounds, feelings and emotions without necessarily representing reality for what it was, but inserting images more akin to dreams and nightmares.
Abstractionism starts here and simplifies the image more and more, to the point of making it unrecognizable and entrusting individual colors and shapes with meanings that can no longer be read without explanation.

Abstractionism was born from the artists’ choice to deny the representation of reality in order to exalt their own feelings fundamental reference point is Wilhelm Worringer ‘s text ” Abstraction and Empathy,” from 1907, where art is interpreted according to the artist’sintentionality .

Form is understood as the result of the encounter between man and the world, in an alternation of empathy , that is, approaching reality, and abstraction, that is, rejection of reality.

Piet Mondrian, Composition with Yellow, Blue and Red (ca. 1937-39; oil on canvas, 62.5×72.7 cm; London, Tate Modern)

Abstract Expressionism

Abstract Expressionism this art movement was born in New York during the Depression period and following World War II. The movement is also called the “New York School.”

It is the first uniquely American artistic phenomenon to influence the rest of the world and helped radically shift artistic capital from Paris to New York, and more generally fromEurope to the United States of America. If action painting spread in America,informal art was born in Europe.

It is a process in which emotions are expressed through pictorial action. Theartist’s individuality plays the central role in the work, which is realized through the development of an pictorial language of an abstract type.

Surrealism, is often considered the most important predecessor of abstract expressionism because of its emphasis on spontaneous, automatic or subconscious creation. The dripping ( Italian: dripping) of Jackson Pollock on a canvas spread on the floor is in fact a technique that has its roots in Max Ernst‘s own work.

The term “Abstract Expressionism” is credited to Alfred H. Barr Jr. who coined it in 1929 as a comment on a painting by Vasily Kandinsky. It is later taken up for application to American art of the 1940s by critic Robert Coates in 1946. The movement takes its name from the combination of the emotional and self-expressive intensity of the German expressionists with the anti-figurative aesthetics of European schools of abstraction such as Futurism, Bauhaus, and Synthetic Cubism.

In addition, the movement possesses arebellious, anarchic, highly idiosyncratic and, according to the thinking of some, rather nihilisticimage.

In practice, the term is applied to all those artists working in New York in the immediate postwar period in different styles, and even whose work is neither particularly abstract nor expressionist.


Abstract expressionism has some common characteristics: a predilection for large hemp canvases, an emphasis on particularly flat surfaces, and an all-encompassing approach, in which every area of the canvas is treated equally (e.g., in contrast, some styles prefer to concentrate depiction in the central area as opposed to the edges).

Jack Pollock action painting expressionism abstracts

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