"Robert Motherwell: Early Collages"
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Although somewhat younger (and Waspier) than the Abstract Expressionists he associated with, Robert Motherwell was a noted figure of the New York School (a term that he, in fact, coined), thanks largely to his role in introducing his peers to “automatic” drawing—a concept he’d picked up from the Surrealists on his travels to Europe. Painterly free association, coupled with existentialism, thus became the linchpin of AbEx, though Motherwell’s own work was defined more by formal stylishness than by sturm und drang. While Motherwell produced large canvases, the collages he created throughout his career were particularly beautiful and elegant. The Gugg offers a choice selection from the first decade of his output, during the years in which he helped lay the foundation for New York’s art world ascendancy.