An outstanding English master of abstract painting and sculpture, Ben Nicholson was born in 1894 in Denem, UK. As they say, his art was in the blood. He spent his whole life surrounded by the most famous artists, sculptors and artists. Even all three of his spouses were artists of various directions.
In 1910, Ben went to study at the famous art school Slade, but stayed there for only a few months. The young man has so far been more attracted to billiards and entertainment than the need for academic education. He drops out of school and devotes seven years to traveling the world. He happened to visit France, Italy, the island of Madeira, the United States of America, and North Wales.
At the age of 26, he marries for the first time, and in 1922 he already had his first solo exhibition, at which he presented his still lifes and landscapes. In the early work of the master, the influence of the Impressionists and Cezanne is strongly. But soon everything will change with his entry into the society of "7 and 5". It was an organization uniting artists and sculptors with an avant-garde approach to art. Here he meets his future second wife, a sculptor.
In 1924, Nicholson painted his first painting in an abstract style. In subsequent years, he experimented with artistic techniques, introducing elements of cubism into the canvases, contrasting with the general pastel color of the paintings.
In 1933 he creates the first abstract sculptures - reliefs. In 1934, he marries Barbara Hapeworth, a sculptor whom he met in 7 and 5. By 1939, the couple lives in London, where they make acquaintance with Mondrian and Naum Gabo, whose work also influenced the artist's work.
Then the master and his wife move to Cornwall, where they live until 1958, having created the Center for Abstract Art here. The year 1937 marked for Nicholson the entry into the Abstraction-Creation Society.
Forty years became for Nicholson a period of the formation of his constructivist sentiments. Together with Gabo and the architect Marten, he becomes the founder of the "International Review Group of Constructivist Artists" and publishes a manifesto outlining the goals and objectives of the direction. For the artist, constructivism was presented as an avant-garde way of creating works of art based on basic geometric shapes.
After moving to Switzerland, the master works in his workshop on Lake Lago Maggiore. He will marry a third time artist and photographer from Switzerland. In the fifties, the artist travels a lot, mainly in Italy and other Mediterranean regions. In his work, drawings of architectural monuments of past centuries appear. Since the middle of the decade, he completely devotes all his strength to creating reliefs. A striking example of his work of that period is Crete, created in 1956.
In 1971, after a divorce, he returned to the UK and the next year settled in the Hampstead district of London, where he would have a workshop until the end of his days.
The artist’s work was original and recognizable. It was formed under a certain proportion of exposure to titans such as Picasso and Mondrian. By the type of his paintings, reliefs and sculptural works, Nicholson belongs to the neoplastic trend in modern abstract art.
The master died in 1982, continuing to work even at an advanced age. His work is highly appreciated by the descendants and the state - Queen Elizabeth II awarded him the Order of Merit.