I use color in terms of emotional quality, as a vehicle for feeling… feeling is everything I have experienced or thought.
Adolph Gottlieb was a prominent American painter and member of the first generation of Abstract Expressionists. Characterized by an idiosyncratic use of abstraction that utilized pictographs, tribal and mythological symbols and with a Surrealism influence.
Gottlieb studied at The Art Students League, Parson School of Design, Educational Alliance and other local schools where he met his friends Barnet Newman, both shared a studio, Mark Rothko, John Graham, Milton Avery and Chaim Gross. He began producing works influenced by the stylized figuration of Milton Avery. Interested in Surrealism, Gottlieb’s art became more abstract with the incorporation of ideas as the automatic drawing. He was a founding member of some artists’ groups: “The Ten” (1935), the Federation of American Painters and Sculptors (1939) and New York Artist-Painters (1943). In 1951 Gottlieb is one of the main organizers of the protest that, would give him and his colleagues, the name of “The Irascibles”. By the 1960s he began producing some of his most famous works, collectively known as the Burst Paintings. These paintings show us the opposition between two forms, the upper circle as opposed to the disorderly explosion in the lower, in which he speaks of the tension between meditation and action, the premeditated and the accident, the contained as opposed to the gestural. All of these works achieved an emotional intensity through color and line.