Further Biographical Context for George Hallett
George Hallett was born in 1942 and was largely influenced creatively by the 1960s growing up. 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. Artwork 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, using things like advertising, comic books and ideas surrounding celebrity culture as their main visual inspiration. A parallel movement developed on the West Coast in California - a strain that also related to language in art, and is viewed as the initial flowerings of conceptual art. Minimalism developed a formal language with no external references, focused solely on line, colour and geometric form as key components 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 philosophies of Abstract Expressionism, but removed much of the rhetoric, instead approaching a more rule-based approach to surface and colour that related this practice to Minimalism. Around the world many artistic movements echoed the creative concerns of the previously mentioned movements, often with regional specialisms and nuance. In Italy, Lucio Fontana and Piero Manzoni established 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 artists, with artists like Francis Bacon and Alberto Giacometti achieving international prominence for their distinctive approaches to the human form and the anguish related to the human condition.