Further Biographical Context for Leroy Clarke
Leroy Clarke was born in 1938 and was predominantly inspired by the 1950s growing up. The 1950s can be said to have been dominated by Abstract Expressionism, a form of painting that prioritised dramatic brushstrokes and explored ideas about organic nature, spirituality and the sublime. Much of the focus was on the formal techniques of painting, and ideas of action painting were unified with the political freedom of the United States society as opposed to the strict nature of the Soviet bloc. Important artists of the Abstract Expressionist Generation included Jackson Pollock (who innovated his famed drip, splatter and pour painting techniques), Willem de Kooning, Mark Rothko, Frank Kline, Barnett Newman, Clyfford Still and Adolph Gottlieb. It was a male dominated environment, though necessary reassessment of this period has emphasised the contributions of female artists such as Lee Krasner, Joan Mitchell, and Louise Bourgeois, amongst others.