1944 - 1992
Further Biographical Context for Johnny Mayarra
Johnny Mayarra was born in 1944 and was predominantly inspired creatively by the 1960s. The 1960s were an explosive decade internationally, bearing witness to great increase of modernist ideas and trends. It was the era of Kennedy and Kruschev, and the beginning of the Cold War, which would endure for most of the second half of the 20th century, and was characterised most symbolically by the construction of the Berlin Wall in 1961. The Iron Curtain divided Eastern and Western Europe, both ideologically and literally, and student political uprisings took place globally. Psychedelia, an massive increase in consumerism, and the associated trends of marketing and advertising further epitomised the era. Minimalism developed a formal language with no external references, based solely on line, colour and geometric form as key constituents of both painting and sculpture. The significant figures of Minimalism included Frank Stella, Donald Judd and Agnes Martin. Pop Art was a prominent offshoot of minimalism, a discipline that became renowned through the work of artists like Victor Vasarely and Bridget Riley. 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 developed Spatialism, and in Germany the Zero group under the leadership of Gunter Uecker adopted similar ideas. The influential school of Existentialist Philosophy was an important source of inspiration for creatives, with artists like Francis Bacon and Alberto Giacometti becoming known worldwide for their distinctive approaches to the human form and the angst related to the human condition.