American
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Emil Bisttram (American, born Hungary, 1895–1976),
Taos , 1933
watercolor, 17 x 23 in.; 43.18 x 58.42 cm
Gift of George Barker, 1963.626

Bisttram first visited Taos in 1930 and later settled there, enthralled by the quality of light and natural beauty of New Mexico. Although his style varied from realist to abstract, he considered himself a modernist and experimented with abstract forms and brighter colors. In Taos he founded or co-founded a number of artists' associations and schools, most notably the Transcendental Painting Group with Raymond Jonson. This short-lived alliance of artists aimed “to carry painting beyond the appearance of the physical world.”

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