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Neo-expressionism is an art movement that emerged in the late 1970s and early 1980s as a reaction to the minimalism and conceptual art that had dominated the art world in the previous decade. Neo-expressionism is characterised by its use of bold, gestural brushstrokes, bright colours, and a return to traditional subject matter such as the human figure and the representation of emotion.


Neo Expressionism | Woman and woman Georg Baselitz
Woman and woman, 1994, Georg Baselitz


Neo-expressionism was a global movement that emerged in different countries such as Germany, Italy, United States and Argentina, but it was especially prominent in Germany, where it was known as “Neue Wilde” (New Wild Ones). Artists associated with the movement include Georg Baselitz, Anselm Kiefer, and Jörg Immendorff in Germany, Francesco Clemente, Enzo Cucchi, Sandro Chia, and Mimmo Paladino in Italy, and Julian Schnabel, David Salle, and Jean-Michel Basquiat in the United States.


Neo Expressionism | Semen by Francesco Clemente Petersburg Press
Semen, 1987, Francesco Clemente


The artists of the Neo-expressionism movement were reacting to the minimalism and conceptual art of the previous decade and sought to reintroduce emotion, subjectivity, and personal expression into their art. They often drew inspiration from the art of the past, particularly the art of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, such as the work of Vincent van Gogh, Edvard Munch, and the German Expressionists.


Neo Expressionism | Ascent by Jean-Michel Basquiat
Ascent, 2017, Jean-Michel Basquiat


Neo-expressionism was marked by a return to traditional techniques such as painting and drawing, often with a focus on the human figure and the representation of emotion. The artists of the movement used bold, gestural brushstrokes and bright colours to create powerful, emotive images. This style was in contrast to the more minimal and conceptual art that had been popular in the previous decade.

The movement also had a significant impact on the art market, as the work of Neo-expressionist artists became highly sought after by collectors, and the movement had a significant influence on the development of contemporary art in the 1980s.

View prints by Neo-Expressionism artists.