biographie de Hans HOFMANN (1880-1966)

Birth place: Weissenburg, Germany

Addresses: NYC/Provincetown, MA

Profession: Painter, teacher

Studied: Munich with W. Schwartz.; sketch classes at Acad. de la Grande Chaumiere, Paris

Exhibited: Berlin, 1910; San Fran., 1931; Delgado Mus., 1940; Chicago AC, 1944; Art of This Century Gal., nYC, 1944 (solo); WMAA, 1945-65; Paris, 1949; Univ. Illinois, 1950 (prize); PAFA, 1951-66 (8 times, prize:1954) Contemporary Art Soc., 1952 (prize); Corcoran Gal. biennials, 1953-65 (6 times); Baltimore Mus. Art, 1954; NYC Gal., 1959 (retrospective); Venice Biennale, 1960; Nüremberg, other German cities, 1960; M. de Poche, Paris, 1961.

Member: NIAL

Work: AIC; BMA; Cleveland Mus.; Dallas MFA; Hirshhorn Mus., Wash., DC; MMA; Newark (NJ) Mus; PMA; Guggenheim Mus., NYC; WMAA; Univ. Calif., Berkeley; MoMA

Comments: Called by critic Clement Greenberg the most important teacher of our time" (The Nation, 1945), but his own paintings were not widely recognized until the 1960s. He worked in Paris (1904-14), and opened his own school in Munich (1915). He taught in the Bavarian Alps, Italy, and France, as well as summer classes at the Univ. Calif. (1930-31) and ASL (1932-33). After settling permanently in NYC in 1932, he opened the Hans Hofmann School of Fine Art in NYC (1933-58) and Provincetown (1934-58). By 1957, it was estimated that he had taught more than 6,000 young modernist painters. In his own painting, Hofmann began experimenting with nonobjective forms about 1940, and his "Spring" (1940, MoMA) was one of the earliest paintings in which random paint drippings, etc., were incorporated into the total work. After 1955 his own work changed from pure "action painting" to incorporate geometric abstraction. Author: Search for the Real and Other Essays.

Sources: WW40; WW66; Sam Hunter, Hans Hofmann (1963); Crotty, 123; Provincetown Painters, 215-18; Baigell, Dictionary; Falk, Exh. Record Series.

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