W. Eugene Smith

1918 · United States

Artist biography

W. Eugene Smith is seen as an established artist, who was born and brought up in the United States. W. Eugene Smith was born in 1918. Born in the same country and around the same year are Dorothea Tanning, Louise Bourgeois, Agnes Martin, Jackson Pollock and Philip Guston.

About W. Eugene Smith's work

W. Eugene Smith's work is essentially grounded in figuration. In essence, figurative art is art which depicts recognizable aspects of reality, or of the human figure. Although the definition seems to be rather simple, figuration still remains in its very soul more than just a portrayal of reality. Indeed, the different styles in which figurative art can be executed are endless, thus making figurative art a ground-breaking and ever evolving category, in which W. Eugene Smith's work is mainly grounded. Some prominent artists known for their impact on figurative art include Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Paul Cézanne or Jean-Michel Basquiat.

Galleries

W. Eugene Smith's work is available on display in 3 galleries recorded on Artland. Galleries include Robert Mann Gallery and Howard Greenberg Gallery in New York, and Scott Nichols Gallery in San Francisco.

Historical Context of United States

The United States, especially New York city, remains as a central point that has played a substantial role in developing modern and contemporary art in the twentieth century. The idea of New York as a new multinational and highly powerful art hub came to be in the post war era, and the city thrived in asserting its dominance over Paris, which used to be regarded as the most powerful global art centre. The predominance of the political and economic structures of the United States in the modern sphere has provided 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 significant art movements that emerged in the US. These very movements also echoed into a multitude of variations, such as diverse forms of Abstract Expressionism, as well as East and West Coast variants 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 W. Eugene Smith

Born in 1918, W. Eugene Smith was largely influenced by the 1930s. During the 1930s, many political ideologies such as Marxist Socialism, Capitalist Democracy, and the Totalitarianism of both Communism and Fascism were engaged in struggles for power, and characterised the political atmosphere of the era. In the United States, the Great Depression had a severe impact on artistic output, and artists began to focus on the idea of humility and of the ordinary man on the streets. The focus of art in the United States also began to take a more political turn for the first time, and artists used these subjects and ideas to endeavour to impact society. Subjects such as poverty, lack of affordable housing, anti-lynching, anti-fascism, and workers' strikes became prevalent in the work of many artists.

W. Eugene Smith

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