William Baziotes

By way of introducing you to the painter William Baziotes, I could say something like this:

Born in 1912 in Pittsburgh of Greek ancestry; left school at age16; worked for a company making stained-glass windows from1931 to 1933. Studied at the National Academy of Design from 1933 to 1936; was an easel painter and teacher with the WPA from 1936 to 1941.

Became friends with Matta, Motherwell, Pollock, Rothko, Newman and Still; was a professor of art at Hunter College in NY from 1952 to 1962. Had a lifelong fascination with fossils, antiquities, Baudelaire and Thomas Mann.

His paintings from 1933 through 1944 combined figurative expressionism and surrealism, but underwent a profound shift in 1944 with his painting "The Balcony" which introduced the low-key colors, sinuous lines and subconsciously-generated, primal forms that he would explore until his death in 1963 at age 51.

But this would tell you nothing important about the paintings themselves, and that is what concerns us here. And so, here are some examples of his work; the only pictures on the web of this undeservedly forgotten artist.