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Piet Mondrian: A Life
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Piet Mondrian: A Life is the first comprehensive biography of Piet Mondrian to be published in English. This remarkable book provides a long-overdue and compelling account of the life of perhaps the most influential abstract artist of the 20th century. Hans Janssen, former chief curator at the Kunstmuseum Den Haag, draws on his own research and that of a cohort of distinguished scholars, as well as previously unknown letters, writings and archival materials, to reveal unexpected new insights into the artist’s life and the circles in which Mondrian moved.
From his student days in Amsterdam to his life in Paris after the First World War, to his time in London and New York from 1938 until his death, Mondrian is here presented as someone in constant interaction with the world around him. Far from a lonely, isolated figure as he is often portrayed, he is revealed as an artist reacting to the emergence of modernity and taking the lead in shaping art for the world in which we now live. Translated into English in the 150th anniversary year of the artist’s birth, and already celebrated and anticipated in the New York Times, this is a vital contribution to the scholarship on Mondrian as well as on the development of abstract art.
A cofounder of the De Stijl movement and pioneer of 20th-century abstraction, Dutch painter Piet Mondrian (1872–1944) developed his iconic style of Neoplasticism―a rigorously limited yet generative language of straight lines and primary colors―out of a progressive exploration of painting that took him from naturalistic landscape painter to theoretician of geometric abstraction.
Hans Janssen is the author of Piet Mondrian: The Man Who Changed Everything and coauthor of The Story of De Stijl, and was a curator of modern art at Gemeentemuseum Den Haag.