His father Hoorst Mondrian was Oberfuhrer (Superintendent) of Roads
in Klampvert, Holland. When Piet was young,
the tyrannical Hoorst forced him to crawl on bloodied knees
painting the center line down country lanes,
a cruelty that permanently scarred the child
so deeply that he used his art to expunge the
straight line demons of his childhood.
Nah, that's not true.
His father was headmaster of a local
parochial school and a zealous Calvinist.
The household was so disorderly that when Mondrian's
eldest sister was eight, she did the cooking and cleaning.
His father taught him to draw and sent him away to art
school in Amsterdam where he joined a
radical Protestant church.
Psychologically unstable, he went to live
with his brother in the countryside for a year
and later caught pneumonia.
In the painting "Passion Flower" above, the
blossoms symbolize Christ.
He painted windmills obsessively.
"The emotion of beauty is always hindered
by the particular appearance of an 'object;'
the object must therefore be abstracted
from any figurative representation."
The extreme 1931
"Lozenge Composition with Two Lines."
He called his style "Neo-Plasticism."
He felt he was creating a balance between
He often compared himself to
His last painting,
the unfinished "Victory Boogie Woogie"
anticipated Allied victory.
Mondrian died in February 1944
Hitler said his art was
His influence is felt today.
Yves Saint Laurent, 1965.