Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Kirchner..one of my inspirations.

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner "Two Women in the Street" 1914

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (6 May 1880 – 15 June 1938) was a German Expressionist painter in the 20th century. He was one of my biggest inspirations during my college years and he is not recognized as much in the art world as he should be.  Kirchner is well known for his paintings of People in the Berlin Streets. His paintings are amazing because of his use of imaginary color and his use of lines. What captivated me the most was perspective of his imagery with his brilliance of color (See attachments). Kirchner’s brushstrokes are loose and carefree while keeping the lines flowing throughout his paintings. Kirchner’s forms of lines are imaginary without losing the total form of the people or buildings. His paintings show expression of feelings and emotions among the Berlin Streets of Germany.  Personally, I continue to study his work by doing artist’s copies and I still really enjoy painting them.
A little history of this painter, Ernst studied art history along with freehand drawing in college, later he co-founded the group of “Die Brücke” (The Bridge) in 1905, and became committed to his art work and trying to develop the technique of expression that bridges between past and the present.  Kirchner’s technique created an art movement of a new style of expressionism in the art world.  In 1914, Kirchner volunteered in World War I and by 1915 had a nervous breakdown that took him years to recover. Kirchner was still developing his painting style and working with print making styles as like monograph and some graphic design works. By 1933, Kirchner was labeled by Hitler as a “Degenerate Artist” by the Nazis regime, where over 600 of his paintings were confiscated from public museums were destroyed or sold. Kirchner was discouraged and went into another depression trauma over these events that destroyed most of his work. Along, with the upcoming of World War II dictated by Hitler that eventually overcame Austria, in which was close to his house. These events led him to his own suicide.
A very sad tale about an artist that was a big influence in the Expressionist art movement.
 Expressionism was born out of Germany and Kirchner was a big part of that art movement with very little recognition of his style.  Most of his paintings are displayed in National Gallery of Art in Washington and Museum of Modern Art in New York City.  Have to mention, his work was personally displayed in the Armory Show in 1913—the Armory Show was one of the biggest, well-known art work displays of modern art in America.  Research all the artists that displayed their work at the Armory Show, it’s amazing!

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner " Nollendorfplatz " 1912

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner "Street-Berlin" 1913