Alechinsky's famous "Central Park"
Pierre Alechinsky, born October 19, 1927 in Schaerbeek (Brussels), is a painter and printmaker, who combines in his work expressionism
and surrealism. He studied book illustration, typography, printing techniques
and photography at the National School of Architecture and Visual Arts of La Cambre in
Brussels and began painting in 1947, while he was still a student, as part of a group of young Belgian painters.
Pierre Alechinsky quickly became one of the major players in the
Belgian art world. He founded with Michel Olyff
and Olivier Strebelle the Ateliers du Marais in Brussels. In 1949, he joined the
avant-garde artistic movement CoBrA, bringing together artists from Copenhagen,
Brussels and Amsterdam advocating a return to a more challenging, bold and aggressive art.
After the dissolution of CoBrA, Pierre Alechinsky
moved to Paris, perpetuating the spirit
of the movement ("CoBrA is my school"), and spending most of his
time with the Surrealists. He completed his training as a printmaker and learned new
techniques at the Atelier 17. In 1954, he met the Chinese painter, Walasse
Ting, who is a great influence on Alechinsky's work evolution.
His first major exhibition was organized in 1955 at the Centre for Fine Arts in Brussels. In 1958,
the Institute of Contemporary Arts in London housed Alechinsky's ink paintings. In
1960, for the XXX Biennale de Venise, he exhibited at the Belgian Pavilion.
He gradually gave up on oil paint for faster and
more flexible materials such as ink, which allowed him to paint in a fluid and sensitive style.
Fascinated by oriental calligraphy and its spontaneity, he did several trips to the Far East.
In the 1960s, he performed frequent trips to New York where he was initiated to acrylic paint by Walasse Ting.
That same year Alechinsky created his famous painting Central Park.
From December 2007 to March 2008, for Alechinsky's eightieth birthday, the Royal Museums of Fine Arts of Belgium in Brussels organized a retrospective of
the entire career of the artist.