Further Biographical Context for Henri Eteve
Born in 1942, Henri Eteve's creative work was primarily inspired by the 1960s. The universal impact of the 1960s was truly sensational across the globe. Illustrative of a time inspiring both hope and anger, the 1960s prompted an explosion of cutting-edge philosophies and movements, truly exciting and spectacular. Historically established in the context of the Cold War, which would have a highly influential impact internationally, mainly defined by the Iron Curtain dividing Europe both physically and spiritually, and significantly marked by the construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961. The 1960s re-defined all pre-existing assumptions on gender, race and justice, questioned education as well as morality and selfhood – for instance through the civil rights movement and second wave of feminism, as well as student political uprisings. The incredible escalation of mass consumerism also defined the era, generating new trends in marketing and advertising. Minimalism developed the central idea that art should exist in its own reality, and not try to mimic the real world. Born of a desire to erase all pre-established conceptions about art, Minimalism became a radically progressive movement, highly influential worldwide, with artists such as Frank Stella, Donald Judd and Dan Flavin as key figures. Minimalism became significant through the works of artists such as Victor Vasarely and Bridget Riley, while Pop art was a fundamental by-product of the latter, at the same time critiquing and glorifying popular culture. The iconic contemporary art movements that reverberated through the wave of radicalism of the 1960s also had their own nuances and scopes, distinctive to different regions or countries. Spatialism, for example, was founded in Italy by Lucio Fontana and Piero Manzoni, and its ideologies embraced by the Zero group in Germany. Across Europe, the ideologies of Existentialism strongly influenced artists like Francis Bacon and Alberto Giacometti, who strived to portray the raw human emotions often associated with reflections on death and the lingering anxiety of the meaninglessness of life.