Alex Minewski (1917-1979) dedicated his life to abstract expresssionism and this book explores his fascination with sea creatures on Monhegan Island, Maine and his use of Push Pull Theory to explore the spacial relationships of these strange creatures. In his fish portraits, like de Kooning's female figures, the ugly is transformed into incredible expressions of mystery, danger and movement. All the things that have attracted artists such as Robert Henri, Georege Bellows, Eric Hudson, Rockwell Kent & Jamie Wyeth to this remote island.
Born in 1917, Alex Minewski was an independent spirit who left home at age fourteen with sketchbook in hand exploring the American West. He studied with Sarkis Sarkisian in Detroit and the the Arts Student Leagure in New York with Jean Charlot, Ernest Fiene, George Grosz and Vaclav Vytlacil. Minewski claims a strong influence with left on him by Boardman Robinson during a time in Colorado Springs.
After serving in WWII (member of Merrill's Marauders), he studied in Paris for two years and then returned to study in New York City with Hans Hoffman. While in New York he maintained a studio where he painted, framed and provided restoration services. In 1966, Minewski became a teacher at State University College, New Paltz.
Minewski would spend over 20 years going to the island during the 50's modernist era and add his name to the roll of exceptional artists the island has influenced. In these works we see an exploration of dynamic forces through colors and form and the use of the fish form to express emotion and character and the dynamic forces that produced them.
"For the past twenty years, summers on Monhegan Island, ME have become the focal point for my absorbing visual interest in land, sea and sky. My research into the world of fish led me to explore all varieties of undersea life. I have tried to stress the conceptual value of things "seen", rather than simply what the eye "looks at." - Alex Minewski