Further Biographical Context for Tom Djunpurrurr
Born in 1936, Tom Djunpurrurr grew up during the 1950s and was inspired by the artistic culture of the time. It can be said that the 1950s were dominated by Abstract Expressionism, a form of painting that prioritised dramatic brushstrokes and expressed ideas about organic nature, spirituality and the sublime. Much of the focus was on the formal properties of painting, and ideas of action painting were unified with the political freedom of the United States society as opposed to the strictures nature of the Soviet bloc. Influential 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.