Kandinsky was a trailblazer of modern art, a practitioner of radical abstraction and the author of key theoretical works concerned with the spiritual and formal aspects of art. In Open Green, painted in 1923, his interests in spirituality and form create a dreamscape of color and shape that is both abstract and figurative. Born in Moscow, Kandinsky was a devoted student of Russian folklore and icon painting. In this painting, the combination of shapes—such as the circle pierced by a slender diagonal line, the two curving black commas and the colorful checkerboard— has been read as a depiction of Saint George, the patron of the Russian Orthodox church. With his lance and shield held up high, the equestrian gallops into the heavens.
- Artist Name: Vassily Kandinsky (Russian, 1866–1944)
- Title: Open Green
- Date: 1923
- Medium: Oil on canvas
- Dimensions: 38-1/4 x 38-1/4 in. (97.2 x 97.2 cm)
- Credit Line: The Norton Simon Foundation
- Accession Number: F.1971.4.P
- Copyright: © The Norton Simon Foundation
[Galerie Ferdinand Möller, Berlin, 1936-1939, to];
Rudolf Bauer, Berlin, by February, 1939;
The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, 1939 - (Sotheby's, New York, 20 October 1971, p. 22-23, no. 17)
Kandinsky Paintings and Graphics: Retrospective of Kandinsky's Bauhaus Years
- Norton Simon Museum, 1989-01-19 to 1990-01-14
- Brommer, Gerald, Exploring Painting, pp. 201, 399
- Campbell, Sara, Collector Without Walls: Norton Simon and His Hunt for the Best,2010, cat. 747 p. 334
- Weiss, Peg, Kandinsky and Old Russia: The Artist as Ethnographer and Shaman,no. 134 pp. 146-147
- Masterpieces from the Norton Simon Museum,1989, p. 191
- Campbell Abdo, Sara, Wassily Kandinsky, p. 23
- Roethel, Hans K. and Jean K. Benjamin, Kandinsky: Catalogue Raisonné of the Oil Paintings 1916-1944,no. 704
- Barnett, Vivian Endicott, The Blue Four Collection at the Norton Simon Museum,no. 286 pp. 242-243
- Grohmann, Will, Wassily Kandinsky, Life and Work,no. 263, pl. 361 pp. 186, 334, 361
- Grohmann, Will, Der Cicerone, p. 895
Additional Artwork by Artist
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