“Shape and color are my two strong things,” said Ellsworth Kelly (1923-2015). The New York artist’s position on his own work was as simple as that, but his influence on 20th century art was considerably more complex. Kelly was a key player in the evolution of hard-edge painting, Color Field painting, minimalism, and Pop Art, though he never willingly assumed the mantle of a particular movement. Quietly and diligently, he observed the built environment around him and captured his shifting perceptions on canvas and paper.
Kelly’s lithograph Blue and Orange and Green is poetic in its simplicity, a visual haiku consisting of three echoed forms in bright hues. “I wanted to give people joy,” Kelly said. His print, which is new to the Zane Bennett Contemporary Art Collection, is sure to brighten your day—and perhaps your living room.
Add a piece of art history to your walls this winter! There’s a new Special Offerssection on the Zane Bennett Contemporary Art website, featuring exceptional pricing on works by legendary artists. Scroll down to view prints by Pop Art icons and Pop-inspired artists from the new collection, and make sure to bookmark the Special Offers page for future additions.
“Ideas hang around images like shadows,” said Sam Francis (1923-1994). “The space at the center of these paintings is reserved for you.” The quote seems particularly apt when it comes to the abstract expressionist’s aquatint “The Five Continents in Wintertime.” Francis employs his idiosyncratic drips and splatters, but pulls back his typically vibrant palette to reflect the purple, blue and brown tones of bare branches set against winter skies. Between these cool winter “shadows,” a field of snowy white paper shows through.
Francis was born in San Mateo, California. He was initially influenced by the work of abstract expressionists such as Mark Rothko, Arshile Gorky and Clyfford Still. While living in Paris in the 1950’s, he became associated with Tachisme. Tachisme was a reaction to cubism and is characterized by spontaneous brushwork, drips and blobs of paint straight from the tube, and sometimes scribbling reminiscent of calligraphy. Francis spent his time in Paris executing entirely monochromatic works, but his mature pieces are generally large oil paintings with splashed or splattered areas of bright contrasting color. Areas of white canvas are often left to show through, and in later works, paint is sometimes confined to the edges of the canvas. Scroll down to view “The Five Continents in Wintertime” and other works by Sam Francis.