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The Art of JAMA
September 18, 2013

Landscape With Two Poplars: Wassily Kandinsky

JAMA. 2013;310(11):1100-1101. doi:10.1001/jama.2013.5314

Thinking back on his fertile summers in the hill town of Murnau, where the landscape and the light were just right and he could concentrate on developing his own style of painting, the Russian artist Wassily Kandinsky (1866-1944) owned up to bending the rules of composition and ultimately breaking them all. Notes for a lecture from 1914, six years after he first came to Murnau, explain his reasoning: “It seemed to me that if one physical realm is destroyed for the sake of pictorial necessity, then the artist has the artistic right and the artistic duty to negate the other physical realms as well.” (Lindsay KC, Vergo P, eds and trans-eds. Kandinsky, Complete Writings on Art. London, 1982, pp 394-400. Republished in: Harrison C, Wood P. Art and Theory, 1900-2000: An Anthology of Changing Ideas. new US ed. Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishing; 2003.)