Further Biographical Context for Elena Hel'R
Elena Hel'R was born in 1946 and was primarily influenced by the 1960s. The 1960s were an explosive decade internationally, witnessing a great increase of modernist philosophies and trends. It was the era of Kennedy and Kruschev, and the beginning of the Cold War, which would endure for most of the second half of the 20th century, and was epitomised most symbolically by the construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961. The Iron Curtain divided Eastern and Western Europe, both ideologically and literally, and student political uprisings took place across the globe. Psychedelia, an enormous increase in consumerism, and the associated trends of marketing and advertising further defined the era. Minimalism developed a formal language with no external references, predicated 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. Colour Field painting, as practiced by Morris Louis, Kenneth Noland and Helen Frankenthaler, further explored some of the expressive ideas of Abstract Expressionism, but reduced much of the rhetoric, instead approaching a more rule-based approach to surface and colour that related this practice to Minimalism. Globally, many artistic movements echoed the artistic concerns of the previously mentioned movements, often with regional specialisms and nuance. In Italy, Lucio Fontana and Piero Manzoni developed Spatialism, and in Germany the Zero group under the leadership of Gunter Uecker adopted similar ideas. The influential school of Existentialist Philosophy was an important source of inspiration for artists, with artists like Francis Bacon and Alberto Giacometti achieving international prominence for their idiosyncratic approaches to the human form and the anguish related to the human condition.