John Lees

1943 · United States

Artist biography

John Lees is an established contemporary artist, who was born in the United States. John Lees was born in 1943. Born in the same country and around the same year are Chuck Close, Dale Chihuly, Bruce Nauman, James Turrell and Barbara Kruger.

Galleries and Exhibitions

John Lees' work is on display at Betty Cuningham Gallery in New York, the United States. John Lees most recent exhibition recorded on Artland was at Betty Cuningham Gallery in New York with the exhibition SUMMER!. The exhibition was open from 12 June 2019 until 01 August 2019.

Historical Context of United States

The US, especially New York city, endures as a central point that has played a substantial role in developing modern and contemporary art in the twentieth century. The concept of New York as a new multinational and highly powerful art hub appeared in the post war era, and the city succeeded in affirming its supremacy over Paris, which used to be regarded as the most powerful global art capital. The authority of the political and economic institutions of the United States in the modern era has granted the country with a prevailing influence on the visual culture of the world. Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art, Minimalism, Conceptual Art, Neo-Expressionism, Graffiti and Street Art, are essential art movements that emerged in the United States. These very movements also reverberated into a myriad of variations, such as alternative forms of Abstract Expressionism, as well as East and West Coast adaptations of Pop Art, among others. Some internationally acclaimed U.S artists of the contemporary period age include Jackson Pollock, Mark Rothko, Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, Cy Twombly, Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, Frank Stella, Donald Judd, Cindy Sherman, Barbara Kruger, Julian Schnabel, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Keith Haring.

Further Biographical Context for John Lees

John Lees was born in 1943 and was largely inspired by the 1960s growing up. In the art sphere, 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 slowly breaking down the foundations on which the creation and reception of art were built. Getting inspired from the imagery of popular culture and mass consumerism, the Pop Artists rejected the authority of highbrow art and created a cutting-edge movement, while Minimalism, simultaneously appearing, was rejecting any form of emotional manifestation and focused on art’s theoretical features – aiming for pure visual responses. Simplicity 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. Bored of the gestural elements of Abstract Expressionism, Minimalist artists focused on delivering artworks mainly composed of polished, clean lines and geometrical elements. Exploring further into some of the concepts inherent to Abstract Expressionism, artists such as Morris Louis, Kenneth Noland and Helen Frankenthaler practiced Colour Field Painting – decidedly relating to Minimalism, with an essentially ruled-based approach, emptied of any expressive aspect. Several schools of philosophy profoundly influenced creatives, Francis Bacon and Alberto Giacometti were artists heavily persuaded by the ideas of Existentialism, who achieved worldwide success through their depiction of the human form and the anguish often associated with 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 initiated Spatialism, while in Germany, the Zero group adopted similar ideas under the leadership of Günther Uecker.

John Lees

  • Exhibitions 1

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