Chicago imagism: monster roster and hairy who


A general term for an art movement in the mid 1960s, it was a loose association of Chicago artists focused on making art that was individual, incendiary, and irreverent---the opposite of what they regarded as pretentious 'high art'. Styles included primitivism, expressionism, assemblage and surrealism, and subjects often referenced sex and violence. Their ???in-your-face'-anger and assertive autonomy, even from each other, set them apart from developing abstract art movements in the East and West coasts. Imagists briefly came together in exhibitions at the Hyde Park Art Center. Major influences were Roberto Matta and Ray Yoshida, teachers at the Chicago Art Institute, and Illinois painter and graphics artists, Seymour Rosofsky. Other participants were Roger Brown, Leon Golub, Gladys Nilsson, James Nutt, H.C. Westermann, Ed Paschke and Ellen Lanyon, Jim Nutt, Ed Paschke, Karl Wirsum, and Barbara Rossi. Critic Franz Schulze dubbed the group???s 1950s generation including Golub, Lanyon and Rosofsky the ???Monster Roster???. The 1960s generation of Brown, Nilsson, Paschke, Nutt and Westermann called themselves the ???Hairy Who???. Sources: Robert Atkins, ART SPEAK; Tom Butler, Director, Columbus Museum, Georgia.

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