Mastering Matter. The show brings attention to the shift from figuration to abstraction, to the characteristic painting style that Bogart built up with powerful strokes of paint, his preference for geometric compositions and his use of primary colours. The exhibition also includes work by artists with whom Bram Bogart felt strong kinship, including William Turner, Constant Permeke, Lucio Fontana, Bart van der Leck and Jan van Schoonhoven.
Long-awaited homage to the Dutch-Belgian master of post-war Matter Painting
The Cobra Museum begins the new season with a major retrospective exhibition of paintings by Bram Bogart (1921-2012), the first large-scale presentation of his work in many years. Bram Bogart felt strongly connected to historically great artists, including William Turner, Constant Permeke, Auguste Herbin, Lucio Fontana, Zoltan Kemeny, Bart van der Leck and Jan Schoonhoven. Several major works by these artists are included in the exhibition, brought into relationship with Bogart's overall artistic development. Amongst these works is the only painting by William Turner from a Dutch museum collection.
The exhibition is an homage to an important artist whose monumental Matter Paintings won him exceptional international fame during his long and very active career. Bogart's work has been described in admiring terms by many, including Jan Hoet, Lucio Fontana and Wim Beeren.
Bogart continued painting into old age, and for the first time in the Netherlands, the works he created in recent decades are being shown in combination with his earlier work. The exhibition is surprisingly multifaceted, with a selection of paintings dating from 1939 through to the present, with special focus on the 1950s. Bogart’s painting bears witness to the artist's exceptional sense of colour, material and composition. The works moreover reveal Bogart's artistic transition from a figurative working method to abstract painting.
'I am a painter, an expressionist painter.' With these words, the Dutch-Belgian artist Bram Bogart (Abraham Van Den Boogaart, Delft, 1921- Kortenbos, 2012) concisely summarized his own oeuvre – which covered a full seven decades. Bogart left the Netherlands immediately after the war, moving to Paris at the age of 25. After 1960, he lived and worked in Belgium. During his years in Paris, Bogart developed a completely unique abstract painting style, based on his expressive handling of the paint itself.
From the early 1950s until 1960, Bram Bogart worked in an attic studio at the famous warehouse on rue Santeuil in Paris, where the Cobra artists Karel Appel and Corneille also had their studios. Bogart's style was initially figurative, but from the 1950s, he developed into a pioneer of Matter Painting. It was with these monumental Matter Paintings that he earned his international acclaim, exhibiting at the world’s major museums and associating with other great contemporary artists. The monumental character of the works and his innovative use of paint are characteristic. He made his own paints, a mixture of oils and watercolours. The exhibition also includes unique film footage, historic documents and photographs that present a personal, lively impression of this ‘Master of Matter’.
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Opening 22 september
Sandbergplein 1 - Amstelveen
Opening hours: Tuesday to Sunday 11.00 - 17.00
Admission: Adult 12,00 euro
Concessions: 5,00 euro