The art of action, the abstraction of gestures
The art of action, the abstraction of gestures (from English action painting) is a trend in American painting of the mid-twentieth century, in which paint is spontaneously applied to the canvas. The art of action is similar to abstract expressionism.
In the framework of American abstractionism, the so-called “shapeless painting” of Jackson Polock was developed, which considered the creative process to be self-valuable, and the result was not important, which made sense only as a memory of the creative process left on the canvas. Returning to primitive syncretism, Shelf transformed painting into a sacred dance of the artist. The shelf hung the canvas on the wall or laid it on the floor, “making” a shamanistic ceremony around it, the artist, as he said, “went inside the painting”. He developed a technique called dripping, which consisted of spraying paints from a can (French parallel – “Tashism” – spotting.) The artistic method of Polok was called in England “painting of action”. In 1952, at an exhibition in Paris, his painting made a tremendous impression on critics who were thirsty for another new word. True, many disputed the originality of Polok’s technique, seeing something similar in the 1922 Hartung images.
Another famous European representative of “action painting” was Georges Mathieu, who brought the technique of ecstasy closer to the play. He arranged his painting sessions in the presence of the public, on the eyes of which he speckled the canvas with squiggles, commas and dots. During his shows, accompanied by music, he was dressed in a medieval costume. Mathieu is recognized as the founder of “historical abstract painting” (another regular pearl of his majesty’s interpretation. This painting “differs from ordinary historical painting in that it does not portray anything – neither people, nor costumes, nor accessories.” (Tv Avagyan) it became because the critics of Mathieu deigned to attribute to his squiggles and spots the ability to express mass popular movements, the struggle for the power of dynasties, etc. Such an idea came to their mind thanks to the name of the paintings (“Battle of Bouvine”, “Capetitions everywhere” and other)
The works of Polok, Arshile Gorky, V. de Kooning, Marc Rodco, Georges Mathieu and others represented the most influential direction of abstract painting of the 40-50s that arose in the USA – the so-called abstract expressionism. His principle was to abandon the preliminary design and systematically constructed form. The artist cultivated a spontaneous manner of writing and free improvisation on canvas.
Growing into the art of postmodernism, the “art of action” takes on more pronounced forms. For example, happening is the most common form of “art of action.” It is based on an unplanned action carried out by the artist with the participation of the audience present, when, as it were, the line between reality and artistic creation is erased. Another form of “art of action” performance is the execution of certain pre-planned actions in front of the assembled audience. But unlike heppenig, there is a certain predetermined scenario in it. In addition, the audience does not take an active part in the performance, being content only with the role of the audience.
In general, a stock is called the “art of action”, which replaces a work of art with a gesture, a pretense or a provoked event. The “art of action” has its roots in the first decades of the twentieth century, in the work of futurists, Dadaists and surrealists. The heyday of the art of action falls on 60-70 years. It implements one of the leading ideas of modernism on the procedural nature of art. The “art of action” is the quintessence of the idea of the prevalence of a creative act over its result; on the other hand, it embodies another characteristic trend of 20th-century art – the desire to destroy the line between art and reality, to dissolve an artistic gesture in an environment that spontaneously flows through the processes of life.