Hans HOFMANN |
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Germany 1880 - 1966
German born painter and teacher who became an American citizen in 1941. He was born in Weissenburg, Bavaria, and brought up in Munich, where he studied at various art schools. From 1904 to 1914 he lived in Paris, where he knew many of the leading figures of Fauvism, Cubism, and Orphism. In 1915 he founded his own art school in Munich and taught there successfully until 1932, when he emigrated to the United States (following visits in 1930 and 1931 during which he taught at the University of California, Berkeley). He founded the Hans Hoffman School of Fine Arts in New York in 1934 (followed the next by a summer school at Provincetown, Mass.) and became a teacher of great influence on the relatively small number of American artists who practiced abstract painting during the 1930s. Hoffman continued teaching until 1958, when he closed his school so that he could concentrate on his own painting. This was to counter opinions that he merely an academic figure and a symbol of the avante garde rather than a significant creative artist himself. In the course of his career he experimented with many styles, and was a pioneer of the technique of dribbling and pouring paint that was later particularly associated with Jackson Pollock. His later works, in contrast, featured rectangular blocks of fairly solid color against a more broken background. He gave a large collection of his pictures to the University of California, Berkeley. ...
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