Hans Hofmann

Hans Hofmann

Hans Hofmann

Hans Hofmann

Excerpt

Hans Hofmann, now working at a peak of production few younger painters could sustain, is one of our major masters. He is a symbol of both the international origins of American painting and its subsequent world influence. It is a sign of greatness, in the career of an artist, when his personal development cannot be separated from that of his epoch: such is the case with Hofmann. He is both a synthesist, who in his work and theory has concentrated the tradition of which he is a part, and a radical innovator who has given impetus to three generations of artists.

Hofmann has played an active part in the modern movement, in both Europe and America, during many of its most crucial phases. By 1898, when he was eighteen, he had been introduced to impressionism in Munich. He was in Paris by 1903, where he frequented the circles in which the forms and principles of twentieth-century style were being initiated. A bit older than Picasso and Braque, he knew them both, and sketched beside Matisse at the Grande Chaumière. Robert Delaunay, whose palette did not take on the . . .

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