Further Biographical Context for Chris Cran
Chris Cran was born in 1949 and was largely influenced by the 1960s. Artistically, the decade began with the twin movements of Pop and Minimalism emerging at a similar time. On one hand, Pop championed the visual culture of the mainstream and mass media, and of products and consumerism. The work of art by artists such as Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Tom Wesselmann and Claes Oldenberg was inspired by the popular culture of the rapidly developing Capitalism of the United States, taking things like advertising, comic books and ideas surrounding celebrity culture as their main visual cues. A parallel movement was established on the West Coast in California - a strain that also related to language in art, and is viewed as the very first developments of conceptual art. Minimalism developed a formal language with no external references, based solely on line, colour and geometric form as key elements of both painting and sculpture. The main figures of Minimalism included Frank Stella, Donald Judd and Agnes Martin. Pop Art was a prominent offshoot of minimalism, a discipline made famous by through the work of artists such as Victor Vasarely and Bridget Riley. Around the world a number of artistic movements resonated the creative concerns of the previously mentioned movements, often with regional fortes and nuance. In Italy, Lucio Fontana and Piero Manzoni developed Spatialism, and in Germany the Zero group under the leadership of Gunter Uecker espoused similar ideas. The influential school of Existentialist Philosophy was an important source of inspiration for creatives, with artists like Francis Bacon and Alberto Giacometti becoming known worldwide for their distinctive approaches to the human form and the angst related to the human condition.