Hans HartungT1965 H-4
Acrylic on canvas
Signed and dated
21.65 x 12.99 in ( 55 x 33 cm )
Inquiry - T1965 H-4, 1965


Certificate from the Fondation Hartung-Bergman


Daniel Abadie, France

Galleria Alfieri, Venice

Private Collection, Venice

Artwork's description

This work is the result of a constant tension between instinct and rigor, impulse and reason. Hartung said: In one of my school notebooks, I would catch lightning bolts as soon as they appeared. I had to finish tracing their zigzag pattern on the page before the thunder broke. So I conjured lightning. Nothing could happen to me if my stroke was lightning fast. They [the lightnings] gave me a sense of the speed of the line, the desire to capture, with a pencil or a brush, the snapshot, they made me know the urgency of spontaneity .

Hans Hartung

Artist's biography

Hans Hartung is a German painter born in 1904.

At the start of the booming expressionist movement in the 1920s, he studied art and tried to reproduce the works of Rembrandt or Goya.

In 1922, he discovered a process of colors with "aniline" which made it possible to give watercolors much more intense colors.

He moved to France in 1935 where he met Piet Mondrian, Alexander Calder, etc. He began to find his style by developing a series of works "ink stains".

Hans Hartung is attracted by the effect of the colors placed in relation to each other while being in a very abstract movement. The 1940s marked the end of the preparatory drawing.

He quickly became a major figure in the informal and gestural language that was very prominent in the 1950s. The color is always present but the forms disappear in favor of a unique gesture while respecting a principle: each color has its movement.

Hans Hartung continued to explore new techniques such as scraping that can be found in his 1960s series which allow him, using various tools, to paint the paint while it is still fresh in order to draw a new network of lines.

Finally in 1970, Hans Hartung became less attached to the sign to devote himself to the surface with the help of a lithographic roller and worked on transparency by playing with light.

Hans Hartung died at the age of 85 in 1989.