Vasily Kandinsky: A Colorful Life the Colletion of the Lenbachhaus, Munich

Vivian Endicott Barnett, Author, Helmut Friedel, With
Vivian Endicott Barnett, Author, Helmut Friedel, With ABRAMS $95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-8109-6319-1
Reviewed on: 04/01/1996
Release date: 04/01/1996
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A gorgeous compilation of Kandinsky's art, remarkable in its breadth and diversity and in the large number of important and fascinating paintings it unearths, this catalogue documents an exhibition at Munich's city museum, to which in 1957 Kandinsky's jilted companion, Gabriele Munter, donated her private collection of his works, now being shown in its entirety for the first time. The emphasis is on the period from 1900 to 1914, which saw the Russian artist's gradual shift to abstraction. His trajectory began with medieval motifs of Old Russia (such as the dreamlike, ominous Colorful Life, made in 1907, with its folksy, chaotic throng surrounding a kremlin), then moved on to brooding or wildly colorful landscapes and interiors. It followed these with religious paintings (St. Vladimir, Angel of the Last Judgment), finally erupting into an abstract yet spiritualized universe of purer forms, colors, energies. Kandinsky scholar Barnett's biographical profile of the artist's sojourns in Munich, Paris, Berlin, Tunisia and Sweden complements 723 illustrations (618 in color) showing oils, watercolors, paintings on glass, drawings, furniture and sculpture. Kandinsky died in 1944 at 78. (June)
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