Extracting Expressionism

Clearly all art IS expressionist - even photography and reaslism/naturalism where the hand of the artist ISN't apparent. We may say that in the case of the less abstract works, that the very choice of subject matter and the manner in which it is depicted IS the expression of the artist. Of course, in the case of commisioned works the whatness and howness of the work may be strictly guided. Note that any any case where the work is commisioned for public consumption (eg, design of a transit station, ritual objects in tribabl works, etc) this "freedom" of the artist is usually at the most restricted. One only has to contemplate the murals of the Chicago Station where Diego Rivera's (pro-socialist and even a bit pro-soviet) glorification of the worker - which were later painted over by the owner; one of the Rockerfellers. ??verify?? Thus, again and again we are confronted with the *context* within which the work was done - echoing Umberto Eco's dictim that "Context is King". This has several aspects: 1. The style at the time. This is the kinds of work or working methods that the artist is pursuing at the moment. 2. Recent events; which we may often take as starting out as a random input. 3. The level of "directness" that the work has as part of it; eg, for a show, for a commission, what other artists are doing. We might view that i'm just begging the question with my word "directness", above. Everything that an artist has done before necessarily carries forward with the possibilites of new work. In this, a lot of it has to do with how the artist has viewed their work in that context before. For example, as the biomorphic form in surrealism spread, and varous artists took up exploring that method - it either did or did not appeal to them. Take for example a comment made to Gorky that some of his recent works resembled Picasso's (he was continually accused of copying Picasso - who as with all things had come to dominate the landscape; one can't do relativty or Guernica and not go un-noticed). To which Gorky replied sheepishly, "Yes, i'm thinkng about Picasso lately." The idea of course, was that something that he either seen in Picasso's works or the biomorphic form intrigued him. Thus, we get things like "Garden in Sochi". This shouldn't surprise us since things like the African (Dogan) Masks and Japonese Prints were exhibited in Paris, and all of a sudden these begin to make there way directly into art of the time. Notably is the use of this motif by (again) Picasso in "Les Madesemels d'Avinoun" ??sp??. Thus, these "trends" of the time are essentially EVENTS in the life of the artist. Thus, i would (hesitantly, lest it be yet another tiresome acronym) introduce: Context = S.E.D. Style Events Directness Naturally, i reall mean that the s,e,d's are elements OF context and not all that it is. googled "online community" "abstract artists" (still looking - a bet mre despreate each end every day.... http://www.daviddeen.com/community/links.html -- a wash.... http://www.intute.ac.uk/artsandhumanities/cgi-bin/search.pl?term1=fine+arts&limit=0 instute: beyond google (finding images) http://www.intute.ac.uk/artsandhumanities/blog/
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