europe.gif (9007 bytes)

Modernism Resources

Wassily Kandinsky (1866-1944) was born in Moscow, spent his childhood in Italy, but spent the majority of his lifetime in Paris. After a stay in Russia (1914-21), where he founded the Russian Academy and became head of the Museum of Modern Art, he spent a few years in charge of the Bauhaus at Weimar. From 1923 on he lived in Paris.

Kandinsky came to remove all traces of the physical world from his paintings, to create a nonobjective art that bears no resemblance to the natural world. In suggesting that he "painted . . . subconsciously in a state of strong inner tension," Kandinsky explicitly expressed a distinguishing quality of modern Western art--the artist's private inner experience of the world. Such a theme serves as a working definition of modernism itself. The revolution in art -- broadly considered as painting, sculpture, dance, music, film and literature -- that took place at the turn of the twentieth century has endured to this day. In breaking with the Renaissance view of the world as orderly, rational and real, the modernist opened up new vistas for artistic expression and innovation.

More information
bauhaus -- archiv of museum design

The Culture of Modernism

Kandinsky Paintings
(Christopher L. C. E. Witcombe)
(Minneapolis Institute of Arts)
Modernism Links
(Nancy Knowles)
Modernism and the Modern Novel

| Return to the Lecture |

| The History Guide |

copyright � 2000 Steven Kreis
Last Revised -- April 13, 2012
Conditions of Use