The Avant-Garde Movement: Understanding Its Influence In Art And History

A prevailing art movement in a particular era may not accept a certain aesthetic. This was the case for artists of the Avant-garde movement who were cast aside by critics of what was then considered high art. Avant-garde, which means “vanguard” in French, became art that was influenced by socialist ideas. Artists of this movement believed that their works, aside from being creative outlets, had the power to educate and influence the masses aside from being a creative outlet.

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Image source: Widewalls.ch

In Zurich, Switzerland, the movement Dadaism exhibited anarchist and anti-bourgeois works. Founded by Hugo Ball and Emmy Hennings, the group became a place where artists can explore their art without being tainted by politics and other moralistic patterns.

Unlike other eras in art, avant-garde and Dadaism didn’t just dwell on the visuals. Poetry and performance art became key aspects of this era in modern art. Found visual art, unstructured verses, and interpretative pieces characterized the movement. At this point, Avant-garde became a movement that shattered the society’s preconceived notions about what can be considered art.

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Image source: Dalipaintings.com

Perhaps one of the greatest contributions of this movement to the history of art is that it valued innovation and expression over structure. It pushed the boundaries of the field that led to radical ideas. Moreover, it marked a return to trusting an artist’s vision for his or her own work.

Mark Borghi Fine Art was founded in New York City in 1998. Its founder, Mark Borghi, subsequently opened a second gallery in Bridgehampton, New York in 2004, which served as a summer outpost with the same program as its flagship location, and another in Palm Springs, Florida in 2011. Visit this page for gallery updates.

Remembering The Enigma That Was Andy Warhol

When it comes to artistic expression in 20th century America, very few names are as mentioned as Andy Warhol’s. He led pop art, which was a visual art movement in the mid-20th century, and came up with pieces that depict the links between celebrities, advertising, and artistic expression. This movement was at its peak in the 60s.

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Image source: biography.com

Warhol’s career took off when he became a commercial illustrator. He became famous, but he also, like countless artists before him, became a figure of controversy. Warhol did many things when it came to his art. He drew by hand, painted, printed, photographed, sculpted, directed movies, and even wrote songs, among others.

He called his art studio The Factory. It was very popular to people of different artistic inclinations. The Factory was often the destination of choice of well-known intellectuals, writers, drag queens, people from the Bohemian movement, Hollywood celebs, and many more.

One of his sideline works included managing the punk rock trailblazing band, The Velvet Underground. He also set up Interview magazine and wrote many books.

Warhol was also openly gay, and he was at a time society didn’t accept it.

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Image source: artchive.com

Today, his influence is felt in almost every facet of artistic America. From exhibits, to books, to movies and documentaries, Andy Warhol and his legacy endures. He even has a museum named after him in his home town of Pittsburgh.

Mark Borghi is an art enthusiast and dealer, founding galleries in New York, Bridgehampton, and Palm Springs. For more on his galleries, check out this page.

Hans Hofmann: Portrait Of Scientist As An Artist

Several exhibits in the Mark Borghi Fine Art gallery have harkened to the abstract expressionism of German painter Hans Hofmann. In 2016, the Frank Stella retrospective called to mind Hofmann’s arbitration of both European Modernism and American Contemporary art as a teacher in the U.S., fresh from emigrating from Nazi Germany.

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Image source : HansHofmann.org

Hofmann’s imprint among modern artists in New York was also honored in a 2014 retrospective dedicated to the man himself. Hans Hofmann : A Retrospective (2014) bursts with the free coloring of a painter not given to excess in artistic expression. He once issued an aphorism favoring the relation of a painting’s elements to each other —space and color, to be exact— and the elimination of the superfluous to give way to coherent abstract paintings that truly inhabit the spaces they occupy.

Backing such artistic conviction is an awareness of the elegance of science. Before Hofmann was an art teacher in both Munich and New York, he harbored a deeply ingrained Germanic penchant for science and mathematics. At age 16, he was assistant to the Director of Public Works of Bavaria, an experience that inspired his patenting of tools such as a naval radar, a portable freezer, and a sensitized light bulb. One could argue that such inventions with straightforward use bore similarities in principle with his brand of visual abstraction.

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Image source : Borghi.org

Form, color, and space are three elements that are just as important in scientific invention. His focus on these would make Hofmann gravitate naturally to the works of Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso, whose employment of color and form, respectively would inform the voluminous number of paintings Hofmann would produce throughout his life.

In 2017, the works of Hans Hofmann will once again be on display at Mark Borghi Fine Art, along with the works of Milton Avery. Read the exhibit write-up on this website.