Minnie Pwerle was an Aboriginal artist who started painting when she was about the age of 80. Whenever anybody asked her why she had not started work earlier, “no one had asked her” was always her response. Her style of painting was impulsive and characterised by intrepid and lively colour carried out with great autonomy. Her pictures quickly became popular and adored works of modern Indigenous Australian art. However, there was pressure from those who are eager to get her work. Spry and sociable, she could exceed younger women, even in her eighties, and she kept making artworks until two days before she died.
Isamu Noguchi was a well-respected and admired Japanese American sculptor and designer. At the urging of his mother, Noguchi enrolled at the Leonardo da Vinci Art School, where his talents were recognised and encouraged. Noguchi’s forms seem to suggest nature and human beings interacting with one another or with their surroundings. His preference was generally for wood or stone. Noguchi’s work was also richly inspired by European surrealism and abstraction. His sculptures, fountains, and gardens are focal points in major cities of the United States and worldwide. Noguchi was best known for sculpture, but he worked in many other mediums, including painting, ceramics, interior design, and architecture.
Drawing on the Scandinavian tradition of functionalism, simplicity, and craftsmanship, a lot of Danish designers utilised the new industrial design methods to design furniture, buildings, and domestic objects. On the other hand, the making of industrial design was utterly started by the foundation of the Royal Copenhagen Porcelain Manufacturing Company at the end of the eighteenth century. Beauty, function, and an excellent selection of materials can be discovered in just about all designs which were made in Denmark even ten years ago. For the period of many years, Danes were influenced by a variety of elements but the fact is that the core principles ever remained the same.
Florence Knoll Bassett is considered to be one of the most influential designers in America after World War II. She was taken under the wing by world-renowned designer Eliel Saarinen after he took notice of the young Florence’s interest in the buildings around her school campus. While working for Hans Knoll, they fell in love and married, and Florence became a partner in the company. Florence used to call her furniture designs as “meat and potatoes”, fillers among the pieces of such great designers as Bertoia, Saarinen and van der Rohe. But even with such big names, Florence’s furniture creations weren’t overshadowed. In fact, they are still admired and produced to this day.
Albert Namatjira was the most celebrated Indigenous Australian of his time because he was a founder and brain behind the modern Aboriginal Australian art. Albert Namatjira was prominent for his representation of the Australian bush. He grew up in a mission very far away from his family. During that time, he normally sneaked out from the precincts of the mission to survey the Australian bush. He was familiar with the western technique of painting. With this nurtured artistic aesthetics in him, he drew the panoramic beauty of the bush in his free time. Some of the works of this legend are now on display in a number of major galleries in Australia.
The Hermannsburg Mission was established by Louis Harms on 12 October 1849. It’s an establishment acknowledged by the state church. It was the last and longest-running Mission controlled by the Lutheran Church in Australia. The missionaries on the ground were educated on how to speak the Arrente language to make sure what they taught were understood. The Hermannsburg Mission celebrated its 140th anniversary in the 500th year of the Lutheran Church in 2017, and it carries on with the custom of doing open-air bush camps with aboriginal pastors. The Hermannsburg mission still manages a mission seminary in Hermannsburg, where young theologians are normally equipped service in one of the ELM partner churches till today.
David Bromley was born in England but he and his family emigrated to Australia and settled in Adelaide. He dropped out of school after suffering from phobias at age 14. His demons saw him spiral into a period of instability and had no direction in his life. However, he took up pottery and it developed into painting. Regular solo and group exhibitions throughout major cities in Australia followed. Bromley was a finalist for the coveted Archibald Prize for a few times. He is also known for painting surfboards and for his sculptures. Although, he had been criticised for his ‘pop-art commercialism’. Despite some critical disdain of his work, he can currently be seen in various prestigious galleries.
Matisse and Fauvism were considered by 1950s scholars as precursors of Abstract Expressionism as well as of modern art. While resting at home due to appendicitis, Matisse’s mother brought him art supplies and he began painting. He set off for Paris in 1891 to pursue his dream. Matisse had an exhibit together with a group of artists known as the Fauves at the Salon d’Automne. The paintings disregarded the subject’s natural colours while expressing emotion with wild, dissonant colours. Though the Fauvist movement was short-lived, it shaped one of the directions of modern art and many Abstract Expressionists have been influenced by Matisse.
Wassily Kandinsky was a Russian painter, art theorist, and educator. He is considered to be one of the pioneers of modern abstract painting. He had two experiences that would greatly influence his artistic style. An exhibition of paintings by Monet inspired Kandinsky’s use of colours, while an operatic performance of Wagner’s Lohengrin sparked a synesthetic experience. Kandinsky studied and taught art in Germany, but he integrated all the various art styles that he had employed in France. Painting was very spiritual to Kandinsky. He often utilised abstract forms and colours to convey his message. Modern abstract art will not be the same without the works of Wassily Kandinsky.
Andy Warhol was known for his silkscreen prints of celebrities such as Marilyn Monroe, his Coca-Cola and Campbell soup paintings. During his childhood, Warhol suffered from a neurological disorder. It was in these times spent at home that shaped his interests in celebrities and pop culture. This, combined with his expertise and experience as a commercial artist, was a great influence on his work. His work was shown in exhibits in several venues throughout the city and was easily recognisable and appealed to the general public. His success continued throughout the 1950s. He was unafraid to experiment with unconventional means and was, therefore, able to create unconventional art.
Jackson Pollock was an American artist and a major figure in the abstract expressionist movement of the 20th century. At a young age, he was exposed to Native American culture and art. The greatest influences in his art, however, were Pablo Picasso and surrealism. He contributed several paintings to exhibitions of abstract art. Early on, Pollock’s style moved away from figurative representation. Instead, he created his art through unconventional means. As the 1940s drew to a close, Pollock came up with his signature technique of painting known as drip style. This style catapulted him to artistic superstar status. He and his works have permeated pop culture and even inspired computer-based research.
Gaetano Pesce was known to be a leading architect in Italy and a design pioneer of the 20th century. His work was distinguished by a creative utilisation of colour and materials, emphasizing links between a person and the society, through design, architecture and art. Pesce created the purposeful, imperfect, and warm production design to expand the well-known notions of Modernism. He was popular for his work with moulds, resin, and casting techniques used to make different objects. Gaetano Pesce was honoured with so many professional awards from 1975 to 2010 in recognition of his hard work as an expert of his time.
Aboriginal Art comprises of artworks created in diverse ways such as wood carving, sculpting, rock carving, painting on leaves, sand painting, and ceremonial clothing decoration. It is intimately associated with rituals or religious ceremonies. There was no documented language for the Aboriginal People of Australia. As a result, important cultural stories were conveyed from one generation to another with the aid of artworks, symbols and icons. Australian Aboriginal Art has been known as the most exhilarating modern art variety of the 20th Century, but it was not until the 1930s that the earliest paintings were carried out. Aboriginal Art has both anthropological and artistic merit, which made it very unique and significant.
English-born John Glover showed an early interest in wildlife and was to be found sketching birds and nature as a child. He also began painting in oil and watercolour while at the school. For the next nine years or so, Glover exhibited his paintings developed from sketching tours. Glover is renowned for his work on the Tasmanian landscape. Previous English painters had tended to paint Australian scenes as ‘English country gardens’ but he captured the light and bush as it was. However, his realistic views were not always translated to his work depicting the local populace. He is now well recognised in Australia with the John Glover Society being established in August 2001.
Verner Panton was a man with a unique personality and an extraordinary sense of space, light function, shape, and colour. He originally wanted to become an artist, but his dream was punctuated by his father, so he decided to become an architect instead. Hence, he went to the School of Fine Arts and he worked as a traditional tradesman before his architectural training. Panton wanted to incite people into making use of their thoughts with his work. He, therefore, showed people innovative ways in order to encourage them to use their phantasy thoughts and made their environment more exciting by conducting tests with furniture, colours, lighting, and textiles as well as using the latest technologies.
Sam Maloof was described as the most celebrated contemporary furniture craftsman in America. He combined the art of design with the necessity of comfort. He developed style hallmarks such as organic forms, articulated joinery, and a commitment to clean and swooping lines. The rocking chair first made in 1958 was Maloof’s most famous piece of work. Maloof recreated a traditional American design by discovering the intrinsic setback of the rocking chair form and modified it. Quite a lot of Presidents and Vice Presidents of the United States are the enthusiasts of Maloof rockers. Maloof’s work can be found in various museums, institutes and the White House.
Dr Wall was a physician, entrepreneur, interested in a wide variety of subjects, active and energetic, as well as philanthropic. Throughout his busy life, he turned to art for relaxation. He was self-taught and his work achieved a sufficiently high standard. His quest for the perfect porcelain came at the right time when tea consumption had risen four-fold in the society of that time. With Lund’s secret ingredient, they gained a huge commercial advantage over their competitors. Dr Wall continued his interest and involvement in the porcelain works from the inception of the factory until his death. He was a man of his century.
Hugo Alvar Henrik Aalto was a renowned designer and architect whose works included glassware, textiles, furniture, paintings, sculptures, and architecture. The furniture designs of Hugo were well thought-out Scandinavian Modern. His first design of architecture was built while he was still a student. Aalto relocated to a few places, at the same time, built a number of houses. While Aalto was prominent for his architecture, his furniture designs were exceptional and are still the rage these days. He also won many awards and honours in recognition of his contribution to the development of Finland. His wife carries on with the activities of the business till date.