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Abstract art

Abstract art is a form of artistic expression that set in at the beginning of the 20th century. Painters and sculptors increasingly distanced themselves from a representational approach to nature as such, instead composing their works of non-representational forms or forms that only suggested objects. Abstract art is also called "non-representational art" or "absolute painting". Abstract painting soon followed abstract sculpture but did not go so far. Pioneering abstract painters are, among others, M. K. Čiurlionis, a Lithuanian composer and painter, to whom the first entirely abstract work (1904) is attributed; the French artist Francis Picabia Francis Picabia (1879-1953) and Wassily Kandinsky (1866-1944), a native of Russia. Picabia and Kandinsky each painted their first abstract pictures according to their own standards in 1911. Kandinsky, however, presumably slightly backdated his picture. Other leading exponents of abstract art are the Russian Mikhail Larianov (1881-1964); Robert Delaunay (1885-1941), a French painter who was an early Cubist before moving on to entirely abstract painting; the Czech artist František Kupka (1871-1957) and the German-Swiss painter Paul Klee (1879-1940). Early major abstract works in sculpture were produced by the sculptor Alexander Archipenko (1887-1964) and the British artist Henry Moore (1898-1986).