The Easel

26th October 2021

Sword fights on canvas: Georges Mathieu at Perrotin and Nahmad Contemporary

Postwar European abstraction leaned toward the geometric which didn’t enthuse Mathieu. Visiting New York, he met Pollock and others who, like himself, were exploring gestural abstraction. Thus encouraged, Mathieu built his career on flamboyant gestural paintings, executed at top speed. A revealed liking for painting for an audience did not enhance his reputation. Neither does it diminish his role in pioneering a European expression of “testosterone-driven, postwar angst”.