Auguste Herbin, ‘La barque’, 1927, Antoine Helwaser Gallery

About Auguste Herbin

Auguste Herbin is known for abstract compositions in bright, buoyant colors, as well as being a cofounder of the abstract purist groups Abstraction-Création and Réalités Nouvelles in mid-century Paris. Herbin’s early career involved him working through many artistic influences, including postimpressionism (as exemplified in Paysage nocturne à Lille of 1899), fauvism, cubism, and New Objectivism. His final abandonment of figurative painting came in 1927 after viewing microphotographs of crystals and plants, and he established Abstraction-Création as a refutation of figuration and surrealism. In 1942, Herbin created his “alphabet plastique,” a concept described in the book L’art non-figuratif non-objectif (1949) as a system relating color, shape, music notes, and letters. These forms became the language of his paintings, which he continued to create until his death in 1960, leaving his last work, entitled Fin, unfinished.

French, 1882-1960, Quievy, France

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