The First Art Newspaper on the Net Established in 1996 United States Sunday, February 1, 2015


Masterworks from 1925 to 1945 by André Masson opens at Blain/Di Donna in New York
André Masson, Le rêve du prisonnier, 1924. Oil on canvas, 38.98 x 27.76 in (99 x 70.5 cm)© 2012 Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York / ADAGP, Paris.
NEW YORK, NY.- Blain|Di Donna presents its second exhibition, André Masson, The Mythology of Desire: Masterworks from 1925 to 1945. Bringing together paintings and works on paper created during one of the most important periods of the artist’s career, this is the largest and most comprehensive survey of Masson’s art to be exhibited in New York since the 1976 retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art, New York.

André Masson was an initial component of the Surrealist movement from 1925-28 (and again in the late 1930s), closely associating with artists and writers such as André Breton, Joan Miró and Georges Bataille. From his early Cubist paintings to his late calligraphic abstract works, Masson’s elusive stylistic developments situate him beyond simple categorization. The artist is best known for his contribution to automatic painting, a Surrealist practice which embraced chance and the unknown, and for his vibrant abstract compositions, bold use of line and form and innovative employment of materials, including sand and collage. His process of automatic painting went on to deeply influence the New York School of Abstract Expressionists, in particular Jackson Pollock. Recurring throughout his oeuvre is the relationship between violence and the erotic, explorations which are eloquently presented in this remarkable exhibition.

Comprising more than 30 works, the show reveals Masson’s extraordinary imagination, as each canvas and drawings is imbued with poetic imagery and symbolic content. His wartime encounters with violence are evident throughout, with motifs which emblematize his time spent in the trenches of the First World War, where he was badly wounded. This experience had an enduring influence on his work, as witnessed in Le Rêve du prisonnier (1924). Here, a solitary man sits within a twisted matrix of Piranesian architectural fragments; a dove appears to fall from the sky while a pomegranate – a recurring form in Masson’s work – explodes, the fragile and raw red flesh becoming exposed.

Among the many Surrealist masterpieces featured in this exhibition is the early work Jeune fille soufflant sur le feu (1927), where undulating calligraphic lines draw out a delicate profile, contrasting with heavy patches of impasto upon a near monochrome ground. Painting is dismantled and reformulated to enable abstraction to marry with the diagrammatic.

Masson’s subjects, be they human, animal or vegetal, often appear in the midst of violent mythological environments. Alongside one of the exhibition’s centrepieces, Portrait du poète Heinrich von Kleist (1939), is another work from the same year, Métamorphoses (1939); insects, serpents, fish and birds coexist alongside the exposed bones and organs of a decaying skeleton. Unity between man, nature and the cosmos is implied, while offering a unique visual reference for psychological or metaphysical change.

Masson was greatly influenced by his time in Spain – where he moved in 1935. He was drawn to the spectacle of the bullfight, which he brilliantly captures in Corrida au soleil (1936). In another work from this period, Aube à Montserrat (1935), blazing suns and faces hewn from rock formations evoke a Catalonia of the unconscious: “In these completely recognizable landscapes,” Masson wrote, “there is always an element of fantasy, either in the sky, or on the ground, or underground.”

States Di Donna: “Attempting to fill certain voids within modern art history, our exhibition positions André Masson as a unique figure whose very output pictures the severity of some of the most cataclysmic events of the twentieth century: both world wars and the Spanish Civil War. We have on view masterworks that encapsulate the tenets of Surrealism’s foregrounding of desire, violence, and myth – as well as the automatic – as its subject. Masson’s art speaks, with poetry, of life and death, of beauty and horror. The universe he creates is profound, agitating and enchanting – it proved generative for Pollock, and demands our close attention today.”





Today's News

April 25, 2012

Exhibition in Venice delves into the relationship between Picasso and Ambrose Vollard

Now available: Sam Francis catalogue raisonné of canvas and panel paintings, 1946-1994

Los Angeles County Museum of Art collector's committee makes seven acquisitions

Masterworks from 1925 to 1945 by André Masson opens at Blain/Di Donna in New York

World Monuments Fund, Government of Madhya Pradesh announce conservation partnership

Stunning 12th century carved marble basin tops Bonhams Islamic and Indian sale in London

Donald Young, one of Chicago's most influential and prominent gallerists, dies at age 69

Foujita and van Dongen Portraits of Felicja Blumental to be exhibited during international music festival

Exhibition of artworks by the French-American sculptor and painter Niki de Saint Phalle at Vicky David Gallery

San Antonio to celebrate 5th Annual Luminaria: Arts Come to Light on May 5

Christie's to offer George Washington's personal copy of the Acts of Congress

Abraham Lincoln's opera glasses used when he was assassinated at Ford Theater to be auctioned

New York City is portrayed online in 870,000 images from the Department of Records

Exhibition of new work by Liza Lou on view at White Cube Hoxton Square

Best ideas for the Philadelphia arts receive $2.76 million in funding

Saatchi Gallery offers an international perspective on current trends in photography

Sotheby's to sell 400-year-old diamond

New abstract paintings by Terry Setch on view at Flowers Gallery in London

Rich offerings of Chinese art fill two-day June auction at Bonhams

Waterhouse & Dodd opens first full solo show of Ingolv Helland's work

Most Popular Last Seven Days



1.- Egypt conservationists to sue over 'botched' Egyptian Pharaoh Tutankhamun mask repair

2.- Scrolls scorched by Vesuvius may be read again thanks to 21st century technology

3.- Italian government seizes more than 5,000 looted antiquities in record 45-million-euro haul

4.- Remains of at least five people found in Alexander the Great-era tomb in Amphipolis

5.- Munich poised to lift ban on Holocaust memorial project known as Stolpersteine

6.- Rare coin records smashed by Heritage Auctions at Florida United Numismatists Convention

7.- Bonhams to offer Alan Turing's hidden manuscript on the foundations of mathematics and computer science

8.- Jane Wilson, painter of luminous landscapes, dies at the age of 90 in New York

9.- First exhibition in the UK to examine Rubens’ influence on art history opens in London

10.- Paul Simonon presents a series of new paintings at London's Institute of Contemporary Arts



Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 

Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez - Marketing: Carla Gutiérrez
Special Contributor: Liz Gangemi - Special Advisor: Carlos Amador
Contributing Editor: Carolina Farias

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org theavemaria.org juncodelavega.org facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site