Color Field Painting

Throughout the entire history of the human race people have always lived in the world surrounded by the different kinds of man-made creations. Some of the works are very simple, but others might be more complicated like sculptures, paintings, architecture or any other artful creation that requires some skills and talents. The people are demanding for a better and easier life and there are a lot of different things invented, which improve or satisfy our daily life. The technology produces the tools to make our life easier, whereas an art creates the works to satisfy our spiritual needs. All of the things that surround us make our daily routine more colorful.

Robert Motherwell – Elegy to the Spanish Republic

The painting is an art known to people for many centuries. It was done by the Bronze age people, it was done by the Middle age people, it was done by the Early Modern age people and it is still present in our time. The paintings do not go old; they rather become more interesting and better with age.

Still 1957

Many businessmen would like to have an ancient painting in their offices, sometimes not even knowing what the painting represents. The archeologists get excited when they find some paintings of an ancient time. It is not strange why such findings bring so much excitement to them. The reason is very simple; the paintings represent the life of the people in the time it was created.

Frankenthaler Helen – Mountains and Sea

From early on until now all things we do in our life have meanings and bear some information. The paintings can express a feeling of the people of that time when they were created. It can represent the historical facts or it just can be a reflection of somebody’s view of the world.

The paintings have their own rank according to which they belong to one or the other group or the movement in the history. Color field painting is an example of an art that is related to Abstract Expressionism. Some people might not see any clue in the examples of Color Field Paintings, since they consist of solid color, which is spread across the painting. The contrast of the tone usually is not strong and the focus of an attention might be missing. Some Color Filed paintings have only one color and the other might have couple of colors. The painting creates an image of an unbroken surface.

Hans Hofmann – The Gate

USA is the native land of this type of art. It appeared in New York in 1940s -1950s. European Modernism is thought to be the push for Color Field Painting to appear. The name of Clement Greenberg who was an art critic of that time is tightly bound with the beginning of this branch of art. There are a lot of names known in the field of art that have connection to Color Field paintings. The following names, Mark Rothko, Clyfford Still, Robert Motherwell, Barnett Newman and others, usually go along with Color Field Painting works, since those people were creators of that piece of art.

John Seery – East

There is a couple of key characteristics important for Color Field Painting. Geometrical or amorphous bright color shape is one of the key elements of this kind of art. The image might not make any sense for the viewer, whereas background might have sense. The people of art call such paintings “figure and ground.” The large size of the Color Field pictures is important as well.

There are other points that distinguish Color Field Painting from the rest of the other paintings but at the same time those points are very similar to Action Painting works. One of such points is that the Color Field Painting does not look for a focus in the image, but rather it sees the image as the field of vision. Such paintings stress the flatness of the image, which is one of the important features of such art. The painting does not refer to the real life objects like you might see on the pictures of the other artists. Color field Paintings represent the state of mind of the artist. It brings out the inner artist’s life.

Kenneth Noland – Beginning

Color field painting belongs to the great family of art. It does not matter that some people might see it as the work without clue, because for others it might be the whole world depicted on the piece of paper.

The painting can tell us about other people. It shows us how they felt or what they thought. The painting brings historical facts into our present time. However, maybe not all the painting works might seem reasonable to a regular passerby. Some works of art make sense to all the people and the other creations have inner life, which is open only to professionals. After all, all paintings can tell us a lot, we only need to learn to listen to them and to recognize the message sent by the artist through his work.

Morris Louis – Where


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After trying myself in multiple spheres, I have decided that the bigger part of my soul clearly votes for the humanitarian sciences and art. Thus, following the call of my soul and mind I received the University education and now I am fully involved in multiple web activities. I am deeply interested in the novel web technologies, design, content development and management, optimization and marketing.