Georges Mathieu was a pivotal figure in the post-war art movement, celebrated for his abstract expressionist works that infused dynamic energy into lyrical abstraction. If you’re looking for original Georges Mathieu prints and editions for sale or would like to sell, request a complimentary valuation and browse our network’s most in-demand works.

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Born in 1921 in Boulogne-sur-Mer, France, Georges Mathieu initially studied law and philosophy before turning to painting in the 1940s. His early works reflected a blend of Surrealist and abstract influences, but it was his association with Lyrical Abstraction that truly defined his career. Rejecting geometric abstraction, Mathieu embraced spontaneity and emotion, emphasising gestural brushstrokes that captured his sense of immediacy.

By the 1950s, Mathieu had established himself as a key figure in Art Informel, the European counterpart to American Abstract Expressionism. His paintings, often large in scale, featured sweeping strokes and vivid colours, creating a sense of dramatic urgency. Works like Les Capétien Partout! demonstrate his ability to blend calligraphic lines with powerful gestures, in his synthesis of European and Eastern influences.

Mathieu saw abstraction as a means of expressing the subconscious, making the artist a conduit for pure creativity. His live painting performances, which became a hallmark of his career, reinforced his belief in the importance of spontaneity in art.

Beyond his paintings, Mathieu was an outspoken advocate for the avant-garde, actively participating in discussions around the philosophy of art. He believed that abstraction allowed for a more direct and unfiltered expression of the artist's psyche, an ethos that resonated in his live painting performances, which showcased his ability to channel creativity in real time.

In the latter part of his career, Mathieu continued to experiment with abstraction, exploring new mediums and techniques. His contributions to the art world extended beyond his own work, as he was instrumental in organising exhibitions that highlighted the importance of abstract art. His influence endures through the legacy of his paintings and his unwavering belief in the value of spontaneous artistic creation.