oil on paperboard laid down on panel
14 x 17 inches
19 x 22 inches framed
Private collection, FL
A painter of abstraction including numerous still life and non-objective work, Konrad Cramer became one of America's earliest modernist painters. He founded and directed the Woodstock, New York Art Association and the Woodstock School of Painting. In painting style, he was one of the more radical artists working there, adapting Cubism to the local landscape.
He divided his time between Woodstock and Manhattan and was highly prominent in progressive art circles. He was a close friend of Alfred Stieglitz, who interested him in photography, and this led to Cramer's directing and teaching at The Woodstock School of Miniature Photography. He was also a skillful illustrator and textile designer.
He was born in Wurtzburg, Germany, and was early influenced by the Munich expressionists called der "Blaue Reiter," translated "Blue Rider." The group was founded by Wassily Kandinsky and was the avant-garde art movement of its day. Cramer used oil, watercolor, and ink in a loose, free flowing style that depicted fish, nudes and other objects. From that subject matter, he switched to Cubism, inspired by Cezanne's planes of light.
In 1911, he married an American art student and emigrated to America, where he began his distinguished career. In 1913, he established his American reputation with a pioneering series of abstract paintings. His post World War I style became a fusion of European modernism with imagery of American culture such as common household objects in his still life.