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Accatino, Enrico  

Italian, 20th century, male.

Born 22 August 1920, in Genoa.

Painter, sculptor (including bronze), engraver, designer, collage artist.

The son of Piedmontese parents, Enrico Accatino studied at the fine arts academy in Rome from 1942 to 1945, and was a pupil of Felice Casorati. In ...


Achard, André  

French, 20th century, male.

Born 1 August 1932, in the Var.

Engraver (mezzotint), draughtsman, mixed media.

Achard trained at the École des Beaux-Arts in Toulon and the Académie Charpentier in Paris. He holds an agrégation (a high-level professorial qualification) in fine arts. He is a teacher at the Lycée Thiers in Marseilles and shows his work in private exhibitions, including one at the Galerie L'Échoppe in Marseilles in ...


Adler, Yankel  

Polish, 20th century, male.

Active in the UK from 1941.

Born 26 July 1895, in Lódz; died 25 April 1949, in Aldebourne, Wilts, England.

Painter (gouache/mixed media), watercolourist, pastellist, draughtsman, engraver. Figures, nudes, still-lifes.

Das Junge Rheinland Group.

Born into a Hassidic Jewish family in Lódz, Yankel Adler led a nomadic life. He was in Belgrade in 1912 studying goldsmith's art and engraving with the court engraver. In 1913 he settled in Barmen, Germany, then in Düsseldorf where he was part of the group ...


Aigasa, Masayoshi  

Japanese, 20th century, male.

Born 1939, in Tokyo.

Print artist, painter, draughtsman, collage artist.

Aigasa Masayoshi graduated from the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music in 1962 and has been a member of the Japan Print Association since 1969. Aigasa’s style, which derives from fantasy art, is characterised by meticulous drawing. His series ...


Alechinsky, Pierre  

Belgian, 20th – 21st century, male.

Active in France from 1948.

Born 19 October 1927, in Brussels.

Painter (mixed media), watercolourist, engraver, illustrator, draughtsman. Artists’ books, wall decorations.

CoBrA group.

In 1944, Pierre Alechinsky was a pupil at the École d’Architecture et d’Arts in Brussels, interested in professions involving books, typography, and engraving. He always retained this preoccupation with the printed word and devoted a large part of his time to engraving, illustrating the books of poet friends, and writing himself. In 1947, he travelled to Morocco and Yugoslavia. That same year he began to exhibit in Brussels and became a member of the group Young Belgian Painting ( La Jeune Peinture Belge ). In 1948, he lived in Paris for the first time, and took part in the exhibition Dazzling Hands (Mains éblouies), held at the Galerie Maeght, which was dedicated to the arrival of the young second-generation abstract artists. At that time, Alechinsky belonged to the group CoBrA (standing for Copenhagen, Brussels, and Amsterdam). The group was formed during World War II, when several Danish artists succeeded in expressing their ideas in the ...


Altenbourg, Gerhard  

German, 20th century, male.

Born 22 November 1926, in Rödichen-Schnepfenthal (Thuringia); died 30 December 1989, in Meissen.

Painter (gouache/mixed media), sculptor, draughtsman, watercolourist, engraver (including wood), lithographer. Figures, interiors with figures, landscapes.

Gerhard Altenbourg was sent to the Front in 1944 and was wounded there. After the war he worked as a journalist. In ...


Anderson, Akili Ron  

American, 20th – 21st century, male.

Born 19 February 1946, in Washington DC.

Painter, sculptor, draughtsman, engraver, photographer, video artist, glassmaker, decorative designer. Theatre design.

AfriCobra Group.

Akili Ron Anderson attended the Corcoran School of Art and Howard University in Washington DC where he lives and works. He is a member of AfriCobra (African Commune of Bad Relevant Artists) founded in ...


Andrews, Benny  

Deborah Cullen

(b Plainview, GA, Nov 13, 1930; d Brooklyn, New York, Nov 10, 2006).

African American painter, collagist, printmaker, and art advocate. Benny Andrews grew up under segregation in the rural South, one of 10 children in a sharecropper’s family. After graduating from high school, he served in the US Air Force. Afterwards, through the GI Bill of Rights, he studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he received his BFA. In 1958, he moved to New York. Andrews received a John Hay Whitney Fellowship (1965–6) as well as a CAPS award from the New York State Council on the Arts (1971). From 1968 to 1997, he taught at Queens College, City University of New York and created a prison arts program that became a national model. In 1969, Andrews co-founded the Black Emergency Cultural Coalition (BECC), an organization that protested against the Harlem on my Mind exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Between ...


Andrews, Benny  

American, 20th century, male.

Born 13 November 1930, in Plainview (Georgia); died 10 November 2006, in New York (New York).

Painter, collage artist, installation artist, sculptor, photographer, illustrator, draughtsman, watercolourist, print artist. Figures, portraits, interiors with figures, landscapes, animals.

Black Emergency Cultural Coalition, Rhino Horn Group

African-American artist Benny Andrews was the second of ten children born to George and Viola Andrews in the small rural farming town of Plainview, Georgia. He served in the US Air Force during the Korean War. Upon his honorable discharge, Andrews moved to Chicago and studied at the Art Institute of Chicago, graduating with a BFA in 1958. He then moved to New York, where, in 1969, with Cliff Joseph and Valerie Maynard, he founded the Black Emergency Cultural Coalition (BECC), the aim of which was to force the major museums to include work by African-American artists in their shows. Andrews helped organize protests of several major museum shows including the Whitney Museum of American Art’s ...



Italian, 20th century, male.

Active from 1957, since 1993 naturalised in France.

Born 24 March 1930, in Spoleto (Umbria).

Painter (including gouache/mixed media), collage artist, engraver. Designs for tapestries.

Antonio began painting at a young age, influenced by the metaphysical art of de Chirico from ...


Appel, Karel  

Dutch, 20th century, male.

Active in France from 1950.

Born 25 April 1921, in Amsterdam; died 4 March 2006, in Zurich.

Painter (including gouache/mixed media), watercolourist, collage artist, sculptor, lithographer. Nudes, portraits, landscapes, animals. Murals.

CoBrA group.

Karel Appel was a contemporary of Corneille at the Amsterdam Academy of Fine Arts, where he studied from 1940 to 1943. His interests were varied: Impressionism, the Paris School, primitive arts – African art in particular – and Picasso, and his work reveals a mixture of influences from Picasso, Klee, and Matisse. In 1946, he travelled to Belgium with Corneille and exhibited for the first time in the same year. In 1947, he met Constant. The following year he, Corneille, and Constant formed the Experimental Group (Experimentele Groep), complemented by the Reflex review, as a reaction to the geometric abstraction dominating Holland in the wake of Mondrian and van Doesburg. Appel was a founding member of the CoBrA group, and his style was influenced by the Art Brut movement....


Arbaretaz, Jean-Louis  

French, 20th century, male.

Born 1 March 1942, in Montluçon (Allier).

Painter, collage artist, engraver. Religious subjects. Murals.

Jean-Louis Arbaretaz was a pupil at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, where he was awarded the second Grand Prix de Rome for engraving in 1966. Primarily an engraver, he frequently took religious themes for his subject matter, in a dark, even disturbing chromatic and psychological climate....


Arfaras, Michalis  

Greek, 20th – 21st century, male.

Active in Germany.

Born 1954, in Athens.

Draughtsman, engraver, sculptor, video artist. Multimedia.

Michalis Arfaras first studied painting at the school of fine arts in Athens between 1972 and 1974. He continued his studies at the college of fine arts in Brunswick in Germany where he specialised in engraving and produced book illustrations and comic strips. He now lives and works in Hildesheim where he teaches graphic art at the university....


Arp, Hans  

Greta Stroeh

[Jean] (Peter Wilhelm)

(b Strassburg, Germany [now Strasbourg, France], Sept 16, 1886; d Basle, Switzerland, June 7, 1966).

French sculptor, painter, collagist, printmaker, and poet of German birth. The son of a German father and French Alsatian mother, he developed a cosmopolitan outlook from an early age and as a mature artist maintained close contact with the avant-garde throughout Europe. He was a pioneer of abstract art and one of the founders of Dada in Zurich, but he also participated actively in both Surrealism and Constructivism. While he prefigured junk art and the Fluxus movement in his incorporation of waste material, it was through his investigation of biomorphism and of chance and accident that he proved especially influential on later 20th-century art in liberating unconscious creative forces.

Following a brief period at the Kunstgewerbeschule in Strasbourg (1900–01), Arp received instruction from 1901 from a friend and neighbour, the painter and printmaker Georges Ritleng (1875–1972). He then attended the Kunstschule in Weimar (1904–7) and the Académie Julian in Paris (...


Arp, Hans, Later Jean  

French, 20th century, male.

Born 16 September 1886, in Strasbourg; died 7 June 1966, in Basel.

Collage artist, engraver, sculptor, draughtsman, illustrator, poet.


Der Moderne Bund, Dadaist groups in Zurich and Cologne, Artistes Radicaux, Das Neue Leben, Paris Surrealist Group, Abstraction-Création.

Hans Arp joined the École des Arts et Métiers in Strasbourg in 1902, at the age of 16. In 1903 he began painting and contributed to a local magazine. In 1904 he made his first trip to Paris. From 1905 to 1907 he studied under Ludwig von Hoffmann at the fine arts academy in Weimar, where he attended modern art exhibitions. He returned to Strasbourg, which his family then left for Weggis, on the edge of the Lac des Quatre Cantons in Switzerland. Between 1908 and 1910 he made a second trip to Paris and worked for a time at the Académie Julian. In Weggis he completed his first Abstract compositions and learned the art of modelling. In 1911 he co-founded the group...


Arrak, Jüri  

Estonian, 20th–21st century, male.

Born 24 October 1936, in Tallinn.

Assemblage artist, filmmaker, painter, printmaker.

Jüri Arrak trained from 1961 to 1966 at the Tallinn Art University, studying metalwork. He joined ANK, a group of art students formed in 1964 by Tõnis Vint. They mounted exhibitions outside of the official system and organised private seminars to explore modern art theory ignored by the official Soviet curriculum....


Arroyo, Eduardo  

Spanish, 20th century, male.

Active in France from 1958.

Born 26 February 1937, in Madrid.

Painter (including mixed media), watercolourist, decorative designer, sculptor, engraver, draughtsman. Scenes with figures, figures, portraits. Stage sets.

Nouvelle Figuration, Figuration Narrative.

Eduardo Arroyo was educated at the Lycée Français in Madrid and then at the School of Journalism. At the age of 21, he left Franco's Spain for Paris, where he was to remain in exile for some 20 years. Although his original intention was to be a journalist rather than a painter, he saw painting as the most accessible and effective medium for his main aim, which was political militancy. He taught himself to paint, but this was made easier by the fact that it was not so much any possible aesthetic dimension to the work that interested him, but rather its immediate intelligibility and the power of the image. He brought together a mixture of techniques to create the effective image. Collage in its various forms was a constant feature of his style. In his early work, he often turned to what was then called 'Modification': that is, taking either a genuine picture from a second-hand shop, or a reproduction (as in the case of a work by Goya, Velázquez or Miró), and superimposing pictorial additions to alter the meaning, generally with the aim of being controversial and often humorous as well. He rapidly became a master of minimalist techniques, and soon began to exhibit at group shows. Some of these early shows were at the traditional exhibition centres, such as the Salon des Grands et Jeunes d'Aujourd'hui and the Salon de Mai. He was an influential member of the Salon de la Jeune Peinture, where he exhibited from 1960 onwards, and his exhibitions there between 1964 and 1969 (with Aillaud and Récalcati) triggered militant activity that led to a temporary change in the group's name....


Atlan, Jean Michel  

French, 20th century, male.

Born 1913, in Constantine, Algeria; died February 1960, in Paris.

Painter (including gouache/mixed media), pastellist, lithographer, draughtsman.

CoBrA Group.

Jean Michel Atlan attended school in Constantine, and went to Paris in 1930 to study for a degree in philosophy at the Sorbonne. While working towards his teaching qualification, he taught in provincial schools until 1940, when he was dismissed as a result of the Vichy government's anti-Jewish laws. He then settled in Paris with his wife. He still did not paint, but wrote Surrealist-style poems which he illustrated with drawings. He started painting in 1941. During this period he was involved with the French Resistance, was arrested by the Germans in 1942 and, using his knowledge of psychiatry to pretend insanity, entered the hospital of Ste-Anne. His wife and family were imprisoned, and his brother was killed while serving as a commando. While in hospital, he continued to paint. In 1945 he illustrated Kafka's ...


Attersee, Christian Ludwig  

Austrian, 20th century, male.

Active also active in France.

Born 1941, in Pressburg (now Bratislava, Slovakia).

Painter (mixed media), screen printer, draughtsman.

From 1947 to 1963, Christian Attersee studied at the Österreichisches Museum für Angewandte Kunst arts in Vienna. He lives in Vienna, but regularly spends time in Berlin. He mixes techniques, displaying great graphic skills and making the most unusual inventions seem plausible. Heinz Ohff says of him, his inventions - basically mainly cosmetic and culinary... are extreme representations of certain human functions such as the need to dress up or swallow. In his pictures, they go beyond absurdity and utopia, because they are put across soberly, in an objective fashion... as if they had been around a long time.'...


Bacon, Francis  

British, 20th century, male.

Born 28 November 1909, in Dublin; died 28 April 1992, in Madrid.

Painter (including gouache/mixed media), watercolourist, pastellist, lithographer. Religious subjects, figures, nudes, portraits, landscapes, animals.

School of London.

Francis Bacon’s father was an English racehorse trainer. He spent part of his childhood with his maternal grandmother in Ireland. He suffered from asthma as a child and had no conventional schooling. From 1927 to 1928, he travelled to Berlin, where he stayed for two months, then went to Paris, where he occasionally secured commissions for interior decoration. He visited a Picasso exhibition at the Paul Rosenberg Gallery, which greatly impressed him and inspired him to start making drawings and watercolours. In 1929, he returned to London, exhibited furniture and rugs made from his own designs (although influenced by the tapestry designer and painter Jean Lurçat) in his Queensbury Mews studio, and began to paint in oils, producing some landscapes of dead trees and receiving guidance from the painter Roy de Maistre. In ...