Styles & Periods

Styles & Periods

De Stijl

Theo van Doesburg founded the Dutch organization de Stijl in 1917, first as a journal. Holland had not felt the effects of modernism as other northern European countries had, and therefore the first strains of pure Dutch abstraction were represented by the work of members of the group. A journal was published roughly every month from 1917 to 1928, and welcomed the ideas of all contemporary European art movements. The journal proselytized a rejection of tradition, and artists began to stress simplification of form and composition. The artists involved in the movement were sculptor Georges Vantongerloo, painter Vilmos Huszár and architect and designer Gerrit Rietveld. Most notable, however, was the participation of Piet Mondrian. De Stijl artists shared an idea about the role of art in society. Designers, architects and artists worked to unify every aspect of visual life in such a way as to imbue contemporary lifestyles with a Utopian-like vision of intellectual harmony. A narrow palette of primary colors, neutrals and simple lines, cubes and rectangles typify the work of de Stijl artists.


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