John Mendelsohn

1949

Artist biography

John Mendelsohn is an established contemporary visual artist. John Mendelsohn was born in 1949. Artists like Patrick Dacla Seailles, Umberto Asnago, John Goto, Guan Yonghua, and Lila Locurto were also born in 1949.

Further Biographical Context for John Mendelsohn

John Mendelsohn was born in 1949 and was largely inspired creatively by the 1960s growing up. The universal impact of the 1960s was truly astonishing across the globe. Illustrative of a time stirring both hope and anger, the 1960s prompted an outburst of cutting-edge ideologies and movements, truly exciting and ground-breaking. Historically established in the context of the Cold War, which would have a highly influential impact internationally, largely defined by the Iron Curtain separating Europe both physically and spiritually, and drastically marked by the construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961. The 1960s re-defined all pre-existing expectations 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 significant boom of mass consumerism also defined the era, generating new trends in marketing and advertising. Minimalism established the central idea that art should subsist in its own reality, and not try to represent the real world. Born of a desire to eradicate all pre-established notions about art, Minimalism became a radically progressive movement, highly influential worldwide, with artists such as Frank Stella, Donald Judd and Dan Flavin as key actors. Minimalism became influential through the works of artists such as Victor Vasarely and Bridget Riley, while Pop art was an essential by-product of the latter, simultaneously 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, particular to different areas or countries. Spatialism, for instance, was founded in Italy by Lucio Fontana and Piero Manzoni, and its ideologies adopted by the Zero group in Germany. Throughout Europe, the philosophy of Existentialism strongly influenced artists like Francis Bacon and Alberto Giacometti, who sought to portray the raw human emotions often connected to reflections on death and the lingering angst of the meaninglessness of life.

John Mendelsohn

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