Further Biographical Context for Jenness Cortez
Jenness Cortez was born in 1945 and was largely inspired creatively by the 1960s. In the art world, a multitude of powerful changes were also taking place. Pop Art, embodying the culture of mass media through the artworks of Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein and Tom Wesselmann, was gradually breaking down the foundations on which the production and reception of art were built. Getting inspired from the imagery of popular culture and mass consumerism, the Pop Artists refuted the authority of highbrow art and created a ground-breaking movement, while Minimalism, simultaneously appearing, was rejecting any form of emotional expression and focused on art’s theoretical features – aspiring to pure visual responses. Honesty and an emptiness of emotions were key concepts in the highly influential movement of Minimalism, represented by artists like Frank Stella, Donald Judd and Agnes Martin. Uninterested in the gestural elements of Abstract Expressionism, Minimalist artists focused on producing artworks mainly composed of polished, pure lines and geometrical elements. Delving further into some of the concepts inherent to Abstract Expressionism, artists like Morris Louis, Kenneth Noland and Helen Frankenthaler practiced Colour Field Painting – decidedly relating to Minimalism, with an essentially ruled-based approach, emptied of any emotional aspect. Several schools of philosophy deeply influenced creatives, Francis Bacon and Alberto Giacometti were artists heavily seduced by the ideas of Existentialism, who achieved worldwide success through their depiction of the human form and the anguish often linked to the human condition. globally, a significant number of art movements resonated with the radical changes of the 1960s, often prone to their own regional distinctions. In Italy, Lucio Fontana and Piero Manzoni created Spatialism, while in Germany, the Zero group embraced similar ideas under the leadership of Günther Uecker.