Tom Wesselmann - New York Pop Art

Tom Wesselmann is considered one of the major artists of New York Pop Art, along with Roy Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol. Best known for his 1960s series “Great American Nude,” which featured flat figures in an intense palette of red, white, blue, and other patriotic colors, Wesselmann, in an effort to reject Abstract Expressionism, made collages and assemblages that incorporated everyday objects and advertising ephemera. In the early 1980s, he produced his first "Metal Works,” in which he shaped canvases and cut metal to create abstract three-dimensional images. In his final years, Wesselmann returned to the female form in the “Sunset Nudes” series, where the compositions, abstract imagery, and sanguine moods recall the odalisques of Henri Matisse.
"Born on February 23, 1931 in Cincinnati, OH, he was drafted into the US Army to serve in the Korean War in 1952. Returning home after the war, he studied drawing at the Art Academy of Cincinnati before working as an illustrator of comic strips and men’s magazines. In 1956, he moved to New York where he attended the Cooper Union. Soon after graduation, Wesselmann founded the Judson Gallery, along with Jim Dine and Marcus Ratliff. Beginning in the 1960s, with his Great American Nude series, Wesselman drew from Americana and media culture, to produce billboard-scaled paintings in flat bold colors. Like Dine, he was associated with the Pop Art movement but disagreed with being labeled as such. Through the following decades, the artist honed his idiosyncratic style while continuing to live in New York, NY until his death on December 17, 2004. Today, the artist’s works are in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, The Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Tate Gallery in London, and the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., among others."(artnet.com)
















Jack Whitten - New Abstraction

Jack Whitten (December 5, 1939 – January 20, 2018)was an American abstract painter. In 2016, he was awarded a National Medal of Arts.Whitten was born in 1933 in Bessemer, Alabama.Planning a career as an army doctor, Whitten entered pre-medical studies at Tuskegee Institute from 1957 to 1959. He also traveled to nearby Montgomery, Alabama to hear Martin Luther King, Jr speak during the Montgomery Bus Boycott and was deeply moved by his vision for a changed America.In 1960, Whitten went to Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana to begin studying art and became involved in Civil Rights demonstrations there. Angered by the violent resistance to change he experienced he moved to New York City in 1960. He enrolled immediately at the Cooper Union, graduating with a bachelor's degree in fine art in 1964.Afterwards he remained in New York as a working artist, heavily influenced by the abstract expressionists then dominating the art community.Whitten's work was featured in the Annual Exhibition of Contemporary American Painting at the Whitney Museum of American Art in 1972. The Whitney mounted a solo exhibition of his paintings in 1974. He has also had individual shows at numerous private galleries and universities, including a 10-year retrospective in 1983 at the Studio Museum in Harlem and an exhibition of memorial paintings in 2008 at the Atlanta Contemporary Arts Center in Atlanta, Georgia.Throughout his career, Whitten concerned himself with the techniques and materials of painting and the relationship of artworks to their inspirations. At times he has pursued quickly-applied gestural techniques akin to photography or printmaking. At other times the deliberative and constructive hand is evident. The New York Times labeled him the father of a "new abstraction".Wikipedia















James Rizz - American Pop Art

James Rizzi (October 5, 1950 – December 26, 2011) was an American pop artist who was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York.James Rizzi is a US American Pop Artist, graduated from University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida. He came up with the idea of 3D multiples now mostly associated with his name when, having taken classes in painting, printmaking and sculpturing, he had to hand in grade work for all three subjects, but only had time for doing one. So he created an etching, printed it twice, handcolored it, and mounted parts of the one print on top of the other, using wire as a means of adding depth. Having received good grades from all three teachers, he stuck with the idea and developed it further.He lived with Baybi Day an actress from 1971- 1979. Later, he married Gaby Hamill, a fashion designer, they shortly after divorced. James Rizzi never had any children of his own, but has two nieces Jennifer Fishman and Laura Rizzi and one nephew Brian Rizzi who is also his godson. Finally a goddaughter Georgia Rae Pai Foster, daughter of Emrie Brooke Foster.
Rizzi was most famous for his 3D artwork, "especially the large, elaborate prints and teeming anthropomorphic cityscapes. His merry maximalism and delight in delirious detail and elaborate minutiae created a true art brand, a trademark style as recognizable as any in the world."Late in life, he returned to painting. His "latest paintings combine his Picasso meets Hanna-Barbera drawing style with an increasingly chromatic palette and a complex graphic structure that simultaneously evokes cubism and the most sophisticated Amerindian friezesWikipedia

















Christo Coetzee - Neo-Baroque artist

"Christo Coetzee is an assemblage and Neo- Baroque artist, closely associated with avant-guard movements of Europe and Japan during the 1950s and 1960s. The theorist Michel Tapie, art dealer Rodolphe Stadler, art collector and photographer Anthony Denney, and the Gutai group of Japan all played and important role and influence in Coetzee’s work.
Coetzee, from and early age, had a talent for drawing and the arts. After graduating from Parktown Boy’s High School he attended the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) from 1947 to 1950. It was here that Coetzee became part of the so-called Wits Group, along with other esteemed artists; including Larry Scully, Cecil Skotnes, Esme Berman, Nel Erasmus, Ruth Allen, Gordon Vorster and many others. After graduating with a Fine Art degree in 1951, Coetzee held his first solo exhibition, which was opened by John Paris, the then current director of the South African National Art Gallery.Funded by a Wits scholarship, Coetzee travelled to London in 1951 and married Marjorie Long the following year. When his wife returned to South Africa, Coetzee unhappily followed her six months later. He returned to London the end of 1953, without Marjorie. After being a sales assistant for a tobacco company in London, Coetzee eventually found work at Robert Savages’ framing business where he was able to stay in closer contact to young artists and the London art world. During this time, Coetzee met Anthony Denney, who would not only become his future long-term friend but also the person responsible for arranging Coetzee’s first solo exhibition in Europe, held in March of 1955 at the Hanover Gallery in London.
In 1956 Coetzee travelled to Italy for a four-month period with funding from the Italian government. It was here that Coetzee was exposed to other influential people within the art world at the time, including Pavel Tchelitchew and Albert Burri. During this period, Michel Tapié de Ceyleran, the French critic, visited Anthony Denny in London and was taken by one Coetzee’s paintings hanging in his house. Tapié then sent Coetzee and invitation to come to Paris to meet the owner of the Galerie Rive Droite. This meeting resulted in Coetzee staying in Paris for the majority of the next ten years where he continued his work under the guidance of Tapié, and in collaboration with Galerie Stadler.In 1959 Coetzee was awarded a Japanese government bursary for two years of study in Osaka, Tokyo. It was here that Coetzee was introduced to the Gutai group and many of the influential Japanese artists associated with it. Coetzee would continue to use the influences of the places and people he had met during the time spent in Paris and Tokyo in his later works. In 1965 he left Paris, settling in a small village in Spain, and began visiting South Africa more frequently. After traveling back to Cape Town in 1975, he held a solo exhibition that marked the beginning of what some call his ‘protest period’. Coetzee, after the day of the opening of the exhibition, returned to the gallery and cut up 23 of his paintings, and then began to ‘reconstruct’ them. Although, at the time, he was labeled by the media as being angry, Coetzee later gave a lecture at the South African Association of Arts, Cape Town, situating his destructive act in the context of work he had done in the 1950s, calling it a Gutai act."( wallsaart.co.za )