This past Saturday, I finally had the opportunity to visit the new Whitney Museum of American Art in the meatpacking district with my roommate Kate. If you live in NYC or are visiting soon, it is not to be missed. We spent several hours wandering through the 7 floors (and taking pictures on the 8th floor rooftop), and I left more inspired than ever. The current exhibition, "America is Hard to See", showcases artworks from well-known American artists and amateur artists alike throughout the twentieth century. Walking through the exhibition was a refresher in U.S. history, as many artists were reacting to social and political issues of their time- the Industrial Revolution, World War II, the Vietnam War, the AIDS epidemic, and of course, the mid-century surge in consumerism and materialism. My favorite part of the exhibition was the movement that put American art on the international map for the first time- the abstract expressionism works. From Pollock to Gorky, I love the intense, wild brushstrokes and energy of the style. I particularly loved Dutch-American artist de Kooning's paintings that were on display. The colors are so vibrant and inspiring. My favorite work shown was Door to the River, which he painted in 1960:
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Abstract Expressionism was a post-World War II art movement that took inspiration from Surrealism- emphasizing spontaneous, automatic, or subconscious creation.