Ten Names Worth Knowing

Article excerpt

* Paul Cezanne (1839-1906) French painter called "the father of all of us" by modern painters. Retreated from Paris to home in Aix-en-Provence where he concentrated on underlying geometric structure of nature. His work, designed to appeal to both mind and eye, was a forerunner of Cubism. Known for still lifes of apples, portraits, and, especially, Mont Ste.-Victoire. Called "the Christopher Columbus of a new continent of form."

* Marcel Duchamp (1887-1968) Frenchman who lived in US, called "a one-man movement" by Willem de Kooning, had central influence on many movements in Europe and America, from Dada to Conceptual Art. Advocated "thinking man's" art, with appeal to intellect, not eye. Invented "readymade" in 1913 (ordinary object like bicycle wheel exhibited as art). Famous for saying, "It is art if I say it is."

* Willem de Kooning (born 1904) Dutch artist who worked in US from 1926. Abstract Expressionist image of (most notably) "Woman" emerges from, and dissolves into, welter of slashing brush strokes. Lives in East Hampton, N.Y.

* Helen Frankenthaler (born in 1928) American painter who invented stain painting in late 1950s. Applied thinned paint to soak into raw canvas, creating embedded veils of color. Lives in New York and Connecticut.

* Jasper Johns (born 1930) American artist who, with Robert Rauschenberg, reintroduced recognizable imagery into art. Master of ambiguity; works like "Flag" seem simultaneously real and artificial. His art fluctuates between the known and the new. Lives in New York.

* Wassily Kandinsky (1866-1944) Russian artist credited with first abstract painting, said, "The more abstract form is, the more clear and direct its appeal. …