Media File
Robert Motherwell
Date: American painter, 1915–1991
Biography: A major figure in Abstract Expressionism, Robert Motherwell began his career as a painter in Paris in 1939. The artist's work is influenced by his study of literature psychology, and philosophy as an undergraduate at Stanford University as well as his introduction to the work of Roberta Matta and other European Surrealist artists, whom he met while studying art history under Meyer Shapiro at Columbia University. Motherwell combined expressive gestures associated with action painting with the format and hues of color field painting. He explored these themes through several monumental series including his Elegies, the Je T'aime series, and his Open paintings.