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Best known for his large-scale paintings of curving calligraphic lines, Georges Mathieu is considered the founder of lyrical abstraction—a non-representational mode of painting that veered from the formal rigor of geometric abstraction. Instead, Mathieu’s work embraced an ecstatic, emotionally free-flowing style. The artist’s processes and techniques reflected this uninhibited aesthetic: He often painted quickly, occasionally doing so in public as a sort of performance piece. Mathieu also experimented with novel approaches to paint application, including drip techniques and applying it directly from the tube. Mathieu’s work belongs in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, the Centre Pompidou, the Kunstmuseum Basel, the Museum of Modern Art, the Guggenheim Museum, the Tate, and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.

Georges Mathieu