Kandinsky, the abstraction’s father

1 mars 2016

If, since ever men have wanted to reproduce reality, it was not until the early hours of the 20th century that a singular change in the way of representing and thinking reality.

Canvas upside down, deconstruction and abstract Art

For the first time in thousands of years, an artist will scrap on figurative painting. Vassily Kandinsky (1) (1866-1944) will accommodate Nature at his own will and represent it beyond reality… We are in 1910 and abstract Art is born.


(Figurative artworks of Kandinsky. On the left: Chant de la Volga, 1906. On the right: La vie colorée, 1907)

This art of deconstruction would have appeared completely by accident, when one evening, entered his Berlin studio, Kandinsky had trouble recognizing one of his paintings and did not get the forms: it was simply an artwork upside down. Troubled by this discovery, he frees himself from visual reality to give emphasis to colors and shapes that can, according to him, communicate spiritual truths difficult to describe by words. He will be known in 1911 by publishing "Spiritual in Art", a book that releases art from reality and takes it to a spiritual dimension. In his writings, he announces that he wants to give up outward appearances, hoping to communicate more precisely the feelings to the audience.

(Composition n°8, 1923)

(On the left: Cercle concentriques, 1913. On the right: Rose décisif, 1932)

An revolutionary beginning of century

The transition to abstraction took place slowly between 1910 and 1917, but fits into a creative and revolutionary global context. Science, with emerging theories about matter, light and optics, politics, music, dance and even architecture are entering in a rupture phase. In Art, abstraction is not the only movement to have been revealed, it is accompanied by Cubism, Futurism or Rayonism.

Emmanuelle Levesque, spiritualité et Art

Inspired and touched by the Fauves and Expressionists painters like Vincent Van Gogh or Francis Bacon, Carré d'artistes® artist of the week, Emmanuelle Levesque, began on drawing and figurative painting. After painting from nature and photos, she decided to free her imagination and to trust only colors, only medium. She thus moved definitively to abstract. Emmanuelle Levesque uses a knife to maintain a crude gesture, to structure space and to give more intensity and energy to colors. Open to exploring techniques, Emmanuelle shows a predilection for oil painting and she develops her own pigments.

In continuation of the thought of Kandinsky, Emmanuelle never rolls away from the spirituality of colors and art.



(1) Vassily Kandinsky is considered as the father of abstract art. We may also include other precursors, from Russian origin, less known in France: the Lithuanian Čiurlionis, who initiated the abstract movement towards 1906-1907, or Natalia Goncharova. Other artists such as Piet Mondrian or Malevich are often mentioned when talking about the birth of abstraction.