Wednesday, December 20, 2006

De Kooning

I cant stand this artist works. I can somewhat understand his emotional demeanor behind the picture, but it is a demeanor I do not like. People are often afraid to say they don't like artist that have been accepted by society, often using the `I don't understand' comment. There , for me is nothing loving or positive about this work, and for me it cannot be considered beautiful and holds no referential value ( as being a portrait of a known person.) -Paul Grant (follower of Basho)

Willem de Kooning, American, 1904-1997, b. The Netherlands
Woman IV, 1952-1953

Oil, enamel, and charcoal on canvas
59 x 46 1/4 inches (149.86 x 117.48 cm)

Gift of William Inge, 56-128

Location: Gallery L2

In Woman IV a figural form, frontal and iconic, fills the surface of the canvas. The woman has enormous arms and breasts, bulging eyes and appears to either grin or grimace. Painted in intense and garish colors, she shifts, disassembles, reassembles and merges into a field of painterly brush strokes. Dramatic brushwork, over painting, scrapes and scumbles create a myriad of layered effects that set the canvas in motion and record the dynamic painting process.

De Kooning identified the complex fusion of references present in Woman IV: Venus, the nude, ancient fertility goddesses, Mesopotamian idols, contemporary women, the pin-up of the early 1950s and even the abstract forces of nature.

Fully aware of the ambiguity of form and content in his paintings, he observed: "Content is a glimpse of something, an encounter like a flash." De Kooning's Women are never definitively interpreted. Instead, they remain open, inviting speculation, while suggesting the artist's intense engagement with the concept of woman.

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