Discoveries in 20th Century Expressionism

Have you ever seen these abstract works of art before? These pieces are all from the Yale University Art Gallery. Have a look!

Piede Vicentino (Vicentine Foot), from the series Codex Coner

The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection: Fifty Works for Fifty States, a joint initiative of the Trustees of the Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection and the National Gallery of Art, with generous support from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Institute for Museum and Library Services

From the exhibition Many Things Placed Here and There: The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection at the Yale University Art Gallery:

Though Herbert Vogel knew Michael Goldberg from the 1950s New York art scene, the Vogels did not begin acquiring Goldberg’s work until the 1970s, at which point the couple bought work directly from the art­ist’s studio in the Bowery. Goldberg experimented with dynamic gesture, vibrant color, and emotionally charged abstraction, all defining characteristics of Abstract Expressionism, which swept through New York after the Second World War. In Piede Vicentino, broad, bold brushstrokes and strong diagonals infuse the work with pervasive energy. The title of the series from which this work comes is taken from an early sixteenth-century album created by a Florentine architect, and famously copied by Michelangelo, that illustrates details of Roman buildings.



Continue reading “Discoveries in 20th Century Expressionism”

Need Help Understanding Art?




Does art confuse you? Are you confounded and perplexed by what you see in Art Museums? On art websites?

Well, you need to know that  confounded and perplexed is a great place to start, because you are allowing yourself to wonder.

Like wonder what the ????

Yes! Like that!

Do not blame yourself for not understanding. Just look at it. Take it all in.  Visual art is a sensory experience more than or equal to a mental thing, so you can get a lot out of it by just gazing at it, whether you understand or not.

And questioning is good.

Chances are your education has not taught you much about Art at all. Our educational system has unfortunately not reached a very high level of wisdom, so therefore, Art is not understood to be tantamount to the other “core content” subjects. So yes, you’ve had  lots of Math, every year, right?  English or Literature every year. Science every year. Social Studies every year. But Art? Well an awful lot of people haven’t had Art since third grade, if ever.  It’s kind of like being a first grader in a Calculus class. Not your fault! No wonder you feel confused.




And  pull yourself together! This explains the last 300 years of art in a nutshell, which is a good place to start.  You will have to click on the images to get them to appear if you are like me and on an iPad.

Please tell me if this helps. I will post some more links here as I think of them.

And don’t beat yourself up! It’s not your fault!



If you find these paintings more confusing than looking at looking at a Corvette engine, or watching the last Presidential election,  this website should help.

Jan Kirstein