Modern Art And History

Art from the 1950s to the 1960s

1950s: Willem de Kooning

Willem de Kooning was an abstract expressionist. His work mainly consisted of paintings featuring women. As an abstract expressionist, de Kooning's art was focused on the individual. This is to say that his art reflected him as a person.

1960s: Andy Warhol

Andy Warhol was a pop culture artist. His work focused on commercial products and icons/celebrities. He used repetition to emphasize the subject in his piece. As a pop culture artist, Warhol's art was focused on consumerism and the people viewing his work. In other words, his art was not about what he liked, per say, it was about what other people liked.

The Link: Robert Rauschenberg

Robert Rauschenberg was a Neo-Dada artist. His art stemmed from abstract expressionism, but it evolved into something else. Rauschenberg believed that each brushstroke represented an individual artist's personality, but he also believed that art was meant to be interpreted by the viewer.


Both de Kooning and Warhol have a repetitious theme in their art; de Kooning has the same subject, Warhol repeats his subject in each piece. They differ in that de Kooning thought art was about the artist, whereas Warhol thought art was about the audience. Rauschenberg is sort of in between; he believed that art was about both.