Fauvism and Expressionism (1900–1935)

About the time

This time period spans World War 1 (1914-1918). 

Imagine that you are about to take a huge test that you've been studying for the entire year, you take it and it's long, difficult and painful. You'd feel exhausted and worn out.  This is how the world felt before and after World War 1.  They had prepared for a long time and then the war lasted a long time and a lot of people died.  This was the first war with "trench" warfare in which soldiers stayed for a long time in ditches on a battleground and neither side won any ground.   There were many casualties, and this is the first war where American soldiers were not brought back to America after they died. 

After you finished your test, you want to celebrate, right?  That's what the world did...everyone except for Germany, who lost and had to pay a lot of money to the other countries who won.  So America, England, France and other winners entered the Roaring Twenties (1920s) and partied a lot.

After you party all day and all night, you crash, right?  That's what happened after the 1920s.  In 1929, the stock market in America crashed, lots of people lost all of their money.  The American stock market crash affected the rest of the global economy as well and meanwhile the Nazi Party in Germany was gaining support leading towards World War II.

The Art

Fauvism has harsh colors and painting with figures that are flattened.  This means that people or animals or other figures don't look realistic because they don't look like they are 3D.    "Fauv" means "wild beast" in French, and most of the Fauvists were French and German painters.  The roaring twenties are evident in some of the art and the realities of hard work after looing lots of money is evident in other pieces.



The paintings were mostly oil on canvas.




Fauvism: Harsh colors and flat surfaces

Emotion distorting form.


Matisse: (mat-ees) Bright Colors, emotional movement.  He was French and is the leaders of the Fauvists.

La Danse is a large decorative panel, painted with a companion piece. The painting shows five dancing figures, painted in a strong red, set against a very simplified green landscape and deep blue sky.

La Danse

                                                                                                                   Green Stripe- his wife



Mattisse's later work has a lot of paper cut outs put onto a background with solid, vivid colors.










Kirchner (kersh-ner)

was German.  He painted long, thin, triangular bodies with diagonal thick strokes to create texture.

In 1937 over 600 of his works were destroyed. In 1938 he commited suicide.




Kirchner's paintings reflect the clothing of the time period.  He also went to parties a lot and painted the people who were there.



Kandinsky was also German.

His paintings have geometric, colorful  shapes with black lines

He had synesthesia- he experienced all of his senses all together.  That means that when he listened to music, he saw colors.

He is credited with drawing the first modern abstract works. His great grandson is also an artist.






Franz Marc (Expressionism)

Animals, blocks of color.  Tigers represent power and mystery and horses can represent beauty and hard work.
His father was a protesiona landscape painter. In 1903-1907 he spent time in France particularly Paris. 





This website has more of Marc's art.

The Large Blue Horses, 1911 by Franz Marc




Review Test


Go to the Review Test Page and click on the Fauvism Test.  FIll in the answer sheet with the answers and turn it in to Ms. Allekotte for a grade.

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