DP Challenge:Out of This World

Art installation made of huge nails. Photo taken on the streets of Manhattan a while back. Definitely out of this world!

Pat R



X is for Xceron

Letter X

 Today is the letter X in the A to Z Challenge

 I am taking this opportunity in this challenge to learn more about art and the artist who make them today’ s artist is



(I see Picasso looking back at me with this one)


hiding behind curves

peering back from safe distance

diversion – bottoms up



Jean Xceron (1890–1967) was an American abstract painter of Greek origin. He immigrated to the United States in 1904 and studied at the Corcoran School of Art. . For the next six years he lived and worked with relatives in Pittsburgh, Indianapolis, and New York City . He first encountered modernism when, in 1916, two fellow students arranged an exhibition of avant-garde paintings borrowed from Alfred Stieglitz.  He exhibited in the New York Independents’ exhibitions in 1921 and 1922. In New York, Xceron studied Céanne and read as much as possible about new artistic movements abroad.

Xceron was finally able to travel to Paris in 1927. There he began writing reviews of the latest in art for the Boston Evening Transcript and the Paris edition of the Chicago Tribune. His articles on Jean Hélion, Hans Arp, John Graham, Theo Van Doesburg, and other artists showed his increasingly sophisticated understanding of recent art. About the same time, his own painting underwent a dramatic transition.

As a writer, he was quickly accepted into the Parisian art world as one of the few critics sympathetic to modern art; but few realized that Xceron was an accomplished painter as well. Boy, was he living a double life.  Soon word of his talent came out and a solo exhibition at the Galèrie de France in 1931.

His style was that of an artist who was working his way through Cubism,  Still-life and,figural motifs over the years he moved away from his figural foundations, introducing at first gridlike structural patterns and, by the mid 1930s, planar arrangements of severe Constructivist purity. I have to say, I don’t know what any of that means. But some of you might so I left it in.



When Xceron returned to New York in 1935 for an exhibition at the Garland Gallery, he was among the inner circle of Abstraction-Création and other leading Parisian art groups. Moreover, he had achieved some reputation. He again visited New York in 1937 for a show at Nierendorf Gallery. Although planning only a visit, his move proved permanent. Xceron soon joined the American Abstract Artists, who welcomed him as a leading Parisian artist. Despite his reputation, however, he fared little better commercially than did his new colleagues. He was hired by the WPA Federal Art Project and executed an abstract mural for the chapel at Riker’s Island Penitentiary.

Clearly his art didn’t really provide a consistent means of support. He worked at the Guggenheim Museum as a security guard for 28 years from 1939 to his death. He is described as a “pioneer of non-objective painting” by the Smithsonian Archives of American Art.  His works are in the collection of the Smithsonian American Art Museum.



a to z



K is for Kandinsky


K is for Kandinsky

Today is day eleven of the A to Z Challenge

In this challenge I am taking the opportunity to learn more about art and the painters.

Kandinsky one

Autumn Landscape with Boats, 1908

Wassily Kandinsky 1866 – 1944




coloring outside the lines

a new aesthetic



Wassily (Vasily) Kandinsky was born in Odessa, in 1886, where he spent his early years. His father was from near Mongolia, his mom from Moscow and grandma from the German speaking Baltic. He was gifted at an early age. His family encouraged him by sending him to private drawing classes. Despite this early propensity for art he didn’t give it his full attention until he was age thirty; and not before Moscow University, law school, and teaching law. Where did his love of bright colors come from?  That has been with him since childhood, what little kid does not like bright colors.

Kandinsky was influenced by Monet’s haystacks. He was the father of abstract art, he published his first book,“Concerning the Spiritual in Art (1911)”, yes he did this more than once. This was a theoretical treatise on abstraction that articulated his theory that the artist was a spiritual being that communicated through and was affected by line, color, and composition. Now, it is thought that color does have an effect on psyche, mood etc. So I guess he wasn’t far off. He was a very interesting guy. He moved to France in 1932 after his work was targeted by the Germans and considered “degenerate”. He lived in France until his death in 1944.

The little I know of Kandinsky I remember the geometric, puzzle-like shapes with splashes of primary colors. This is different from the breathlessness of the first piece (that’s how I felt when I first saw it).

The funniest thing I read about Kandinsky was that one of his tutors told him his colors were too bright! If they only knew.:)

Composition-VIII (1)


Composition VII 1913  

Wassily Kandinsky 1866 – 1944




a to z