Collection

Karel Appel
Dutch, 1921-2006

Child and Beast II, 1951
Oil on canvas
Gift of Mrs. John D. Rockefeller 3rd (Blanchette Hooker, class of 1931)
1955.6.1
Period: 20th c
Classification: Painting
Dimensions: Unframed: 39 1/8 x 59 1/8 in. (99.38 x 150.18 cm) Framed: 41 x 61 1/8 x 3 5/8 in. (104.14 x 155.26 x 9.21 cm)
Signatures, Inscriptions and Markings v
Signed and dated (LR): K Appel '51
Exhibition History v
Japan, Shimane Art Museum, "Paris--New York; Modern Paintings in 19th and 20th Century Master Works from the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, New York," March 7 - May 11, 2008. Cat. no. 69, p 129. Japan, Ishibashi Museum of Art, "Paris--New York; Modern Paintings in 19th and 20th Century Master Works from the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, New York," May 17 - July 20, 2008. Cat. no. , p . Japan, Yamagata Museum of Art, "Paris--New York; Modern Paintings in 19th and 20th Century Master Works from the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, New York," July 30 - August 31, 2008. Cat. no. , p. . Japan. Fuchu Art Museum, "Paris--New York; Modern Paintings in 19th and 20th Century Master Works from the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, New York," September 6 - November 3, 2008. Cat. no. , p. . Japan, Miyazaki Prefectural Art Museum, "Paris--New York; Modern Paintings in 19th and 20th Century Master Works from the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Vassar College, Poughkeepsie, New York," November 14 - December 14, 2008. Cat. , p. . Poughkeepsie, New York, The Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Vassar College, "A Taste for the Modern: Gifts from Blanchette Hooker Rockefeller, Edna Bryner Schwab, and Virginia Herrick Deknatel," June 24 - September 4, 2011.
Description v
Appel was a founding member of the CoBrA group of avant-garde painters who took their name from the first letters of the three cities central to their development, Copenhagen, Brussels, and Amsterdam. Their leaders were Asger Jorn, Pierre Alechinsky, Corneille, Appel, Constant, and Carl Henning Pederson. The Danish influence is thought to be the most acute in their development, though their composition and view as a loosely cemented movement was distinctly Pan-European. They came together in a post-war European environment that emphasized a lack of finesse in painting with a surging primitive component that is easily grasped in this mature work by Appel. Also contributing to their aesthetic was the study of children’s draw- ings and the influence of folk traditions. This painting was included in the Museum of Modern Art’s influential 1955 exhibition, The New Decade, which featured the work of twenty-two European painters and sculptor, and which traveled across the United States and acquainted an American public with the work of such newcomers as Appel, Francis Bacon, Jean Dubuffet, and Pierre Soulages. Appel’s first American gallery exhibition took place the previous year at the Martha Jackson Gallery, likely the original source for this painting.
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