The legacy of Jackson Pollock

In the history of painting lots of artists were known because of their realistic work: Leonardo Da Vinci, Jean François Millet, Marià Fortuny etc. However, decades later, a new art movement far from being realistic was born. The abstract expressionism emerged in the 40s during the twentieth century in the United States and spread around worldwide.

After World War II, many artists wanted to start to perceive the paint in a different way and some artist began to express this feeling with violent attacks against traditional painting. So, new generation of sculptors and painters began to consider all materials and topics like a very powerful tool to create art.

One of them was Jackson Pollock (1912-1956), one of the most influential artist of abstract expressionism. Instead of having the canvas in front of him, Pollock put it on the floor and with brushes and sticks dipped in a paint cans, he let them drip directly on the canvas, a method that for him was the best way to express himself.

Jackson Pollock working on his studio.

Jackson Pollock working on his studio.

 Nikki de Saint Phalle (1930-2002), who was famous for her shootings, used to cover paint containers with thick layers of plaster and placed them on a wooden board. Then, she took a gun and from a long distance she shoot at the containers, so the paint dripped into the canvas.

Nikki de Saint Phalle shooting one of her paintings.

Nikki de Saint Phalle shooting one of her paintings.

The most important thing for the abstract expressionists was the method, more than the final result and Pollock and Saint Phalle are just an example of it. The Fundació Miró in Barcelona opened its doors to this artists, which with their art wanted to transmit happiness, anger, sadness or whatever they were feeling. “The legacy of Jackson Pollock” was an exhibition plenty of strong artworks and even now, after all these years, you look at the paintings and you can see that the artist was full of something very powerful and the paint was the way to express it. Martina Millà, Programming and projects of the museum, talks about Jackson Pollock and his legacy and of course, about the abstract expressionism and the best way to understand what is inside of every piece.

Here is Martina Millà’s interview.

*If you want to read the spanish version of this article, please click here.

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