Appel, Karel


AcquestArte introduces Karel Appel

Christiaan Karel Appel (April 25, 1921-May 3, 2006) was a Dutch painter, sculptor, and poet. He started painting at the age of fourteen and studied at the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam in the 1940's where he met the young painter Corneille and, some years later, Constant; with whom he became close friends for years.
Appel had his first show in Groningen in 1946. In 1947 he started sculpting with all kinds of used materials and painted them in bright colors. He joined the Experimentele Groep in Holland together with the young Dutch painters Anton Rooskens, Theo Wolvecamp and Jan Nieuwenhuys. In 1948 Appel joined CoBrA together with the Dutch artists Corneille, Constant and Jan Nieuwenhuys and with the Belgian poet Christian Dotremont. In 1949 he participated with the other CoBrA artists in the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam; this generated a huge scandal and many objections in the press and public. Appel was influenced by Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse and the French brute-art artist Jean Dubuffet.
Appel moved to Paris in 1950 and developed his international reputation by travelling to Mexico, the USA, Yugoslavia and Brazil. He is particularly noted for his mural work and lived in New York and Florence. Appel died on May3, 2006 in his home in Zürich, Switzerland.
Years before his death, he established the Karel Appel Foundation, whose purpose is "to preserve his artworks, to promote public awareness and knowledge of Karel Appel's oeuvre".


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