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Image of Improvisation

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Bookmark: https://collection.sdmart.org/objects-1/info/2575

Improvisation

Konrad Cramer, American (born Germany), (November 9, 1888–1963)

Creation date: 1912
Creation place: United States

Other Information

Type: Oil Painting
Medium and Support: Oil on canvas
Credit Line: Museum purchase through the Earle W. Grant Acquisition Fund
Accession Number: 1973.130
State/Province: New York
Dimensions: 30 in. x 26 in. (76.2 cm x 66.04 cm)

Provenance

Aileen B. Cramer, Woodstock, New York ( - )

Richard Castellane, New York, New York ( - )

M. Knowlton, New York, New York ( - )

Herbert P. Palmer, Los Angeles, California ( - December 3, 1973)

San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego, California (December 3, 1973 - )

Label Copy

Painted in early 1912, a year after Konrad Cramer immigrated to the United States, Improvisation is a pioneering effort in the development of American abstraction. Cramer’s choice of title celebrates his firsthand experience with Vassily Kandinsky, who had been producing a numbered series of paintings called "Improvisation" since 1910. In his treatise Concerning the Spiritual in Art, Kandinsky defined improvisation as “a largely unconscious, spontaneous expression of inner character [and] non-material nature.” Cramer’s painting recalls the rhythmic forms in the Russian painter’s work, which refer to the organic character of nature. Structurally, however, its arrangement of angular facets heavily outlined in black, can also be associated with Cubism.
Last Updated: 4/2/2015

Exhibition

This object was included in the following exhibitions:

Synchromism and American Color Abstraction, 1910–1925 Whitney Museum of American Art , 1/24/1978 - 3/24/1979

A Tate Gallery Ehibition , 2/5/1980 - 4/13/1980

Konrad Cramer , 11/15/1981 - 1/30/1982

Konrad Cramer: A Retrospective , 1/10/1983 - 3/6/1983

Konrad Cramer:The Abstract Work , 3/21/1984 - 5/20/1984

Into the Melting Pot , 10/8/1984 - 1/10/1985

Modern Art: Selected Highlights San Diego Museum of Art , 10/20/2012 - 6/30/2013

Selections of Modern Art The San Diego Museum of Art , 7/23/2013 - 11/3/2013

American: Art of the 20th Century San Diego Museum of Art , 1/18/2014 - 8/26/2014

Art of the 20th Century , 3/28/2015 - 8/16/2015

The Art of Music San Diego Museum of Art , 9/26/2015 - 2/7/2016

Art of the 20th Century San Diego Museum of Art , 7/23/2016 - 00/00/00

Bibliography

This object has the following bibliographic references:

Gail Levin. Synchromism and American Color Abstraction, 1910–1925 George Braziller. New York, New York, 1978
Page Number: 138

Gail Levin. Synchromism and American Color Abstraction, 1910–1925 George Braziller. New York, New York, 1978
Page Number: 26, Figure Number: 26

Gail Levin. Synchromism and American Color Abstraction, 1910–1925 George Braziller. New York, New York, 1978
Page Number: 33-34

Mr. D. Scott Atkinson. San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego Museum of Art. San Diego, California, 2003
Page Number: 185, Figure Number: 185

Marks

Inscription, Lower right:

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