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Post Painterly Abstraction
(style, 1940's-1950's)


Post Painterly Abstraction, or Colour-field/Colorfield Painting. Phrase first used by the critic Clement Greenberg to distinguish the abstract painting of the 1960s from works associated with the abstract expressionist movement of the 1950s (see abstract expressionism). The production of the abstract expressionists involved a strong personal emotionalism, a painterly quality, and occasionally, as in the works of Willem de Kooning, elements of cubism. The artists working in the various styles of post-painterly abstraction moved toward a more impersonal and austerely intellectual aesthetic. In their works they dealt with what they considered to be the fundamental formal elements of abstract painting: pure, unmodulated areas of color; flat, two-dimensional space; monumental scale; and the varying shape of the canvas itself. Among the specific trends encompassed by the term post-painterly abstraction are minimalism and colour-field painting. Painters associated with the movement include Ellsworth Kelly, Jules Olitski, Kenneth Noland, Frank Stella, and Morris Louis. Typical COLORFIELD PAINTING artists are: Rothko, Newman and Still.



Artists Post Painterly Abstraction:
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Post-Painterly Abstractionists rejected the cult of the individual that surrounded that monster of American art, Abstract Expressionism. Pollock, de Kooning, and their legion of imitators emphasized the personal emotional state of the artist, which often rendered itself in the individual brush gesture…




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