John Marin


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(b Rutherford, NJ, 23 Dec. 1870; d Cape Split, Me., 1 Oct. 1953).

American painter and printmaker. From 1905 to 1910 he lived in Europe, mainly Paris, where he was influenced by Whistler's watercolours and etchings, but he first came into contact with avant-garde movements after his return to America, when he became a member of Stieglitz's circle. The Armory Show in 1913 also made a great impact on him. Responding especially to German Expressionism and the late work of Cézanne, he developed a distinctive semi-abstract style that he used most characteristically in powerful watercolours of city life and the Maine coast (where he often painted in the summer). His oil paintings (which became more important in his work from the 1930s) are often similar in effect to watercolours, leaving parts of the canvas bare. Marin also made etchings, especially early in his career. From the 1920s he enjoyed a high reputation. He was an individualist, belonging to no movement, and one of the finest watercolourists of the 20th century. See also Demuth.

Subjects: Art.

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