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Pier and Ocean marks a definitive step in Mondrian's path toward pure abstraction. Here he has eliminated diagonal and curved lines as well as colour; the only true reference to nature is found within the title and the horizontal lines that allude to the horizon and the verticals that evoke the pilings of the pier. The rhythms created by the alternating lines and their varying lengths presages Mondrian's mature dynamic, depicting an asymmetrical balance as well as the pulse of the ocean waves. Mondrian was born in 1872 in Amersfoort, Utrecht. He was founder of the Dutch movement De Stijl - a circle of abstract artists dedicated to strict geometry of horizontals and verticals. Mondrian believed art reflects the underlying spirituality of nature. He worked to reveal the mystical powers of the forces governing the universe. Using paired down colour palettes and stripped-back shapes, he simplified the subjects of his paintings to the most basic elements. Mondrian's abstract art is both striking and modern.
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