The Tate Gallery in London is showing one of the most fascinating and controversial artists of the 20th century.
Born in 1913 in Montreal, Canada, to a family of Jewish immigrants, Guston grew up in the United States, where he became one of the most famous abstract painters of the 1950s and 1960s, along with Mark Rothko and his childhood friend Jackson Pollock.
Throughout his artistic career, he experimented with many painting currents, from realism to abstractionism, becoming one of the leading figures of Abstract Expressionism in New York.
During this artistic phase, Guston produced a series of works characterized by gestural brushstrokes and the bold use of pigments.
One cannot but recall his early works, namely murals, and paintings that dealt with the theme of racism in America and wars abroad.
During the 1960s, a historical period characterized by social and political upheaval, Guston decided to abandon abstractionism and instead produced increasingly provocative figurative works characterized by comic book-like scenes and characters with white hoods representing evil and everyday racist acts. The works of this period often depict stylized human figures, everyday objects, and surreal landscapes, which shape Guston's vision of contemporary society.
The exhibition offers visitors a view of Guston's paintings that move between the personal and the political, the abstract and the figurative, the humorous and the tragic.
The exhibition, which will run between 5 October 2023 and 23 February 2024, is co-organized by the Tate Modern, the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, the National Gallery of Art, Washington, and the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston.
Tate Modern Bankside London SE1 9TG
Dates 5 October 2023 – 25 February 2024