B. United States, 1908
B. United States1908
Michael West (b. 1908) was one of the few female members of the New York Art School movement, and a prominent abstract expressionist. Born Corinne Michelle West, she chose to go by Mikael or Michael to avoid gender-based discrimination. West gained critical success throughout the 1930s to the 1960s.
Adopting styles from Neo-Cubism, abstract expressionism, West adopted her painterly influences from Surrealism and the Old Masters. West’s work conveyed thick impasto, abstracted forms, and vivid hues applied straight from the paint bottle. Harlequin, painted in 1946, is one of West’s most notable works. Its heavy brushwork and tumbling movement lend the painting an undeniable aggression. West later painted over Harlequin in response to the Cold War.
West was born in Chicago in 1908. She graduated from the Cincinnati Art Academy in 1930, later studying painting under the tutelage of Hans Hoffman at the Art Student’s League of New York. Notable exhibitions of her work have taken place at Loyola University Museum of Art, Chicago, and Pollock-Krasner House and Study Center, New York.
West died in 1991 in New York.
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