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Jean De Buffet


Tachisme was France's answer to Abstract Expressionism in the 40's and 50's. Untitled (1984), painting by Norman Bluhm The word Tachisme was named after the French word for stain or drip and this aesthetic statement is apparent in the paintings—which are dripping with color. The compositions look to have suddenly been splashed across the canvas, very similarly to action painting.

This style of painting also has close roots to lyrical abstraction, and like lyrical abstraction was formed as a response to the calculated, formulaic approach of geometric abstraction.

The result was fluid, spontaneous art derived from the philosophy that art should be just that. While this term is used to describe most all French or even European art during American abstract expressionism, it is strikingly different to abstract expressionism. There is a softness in Tachisme that is not present in the raw abstraction of American art.

Critics have called the art sensual, suave and only concerned with handling the beautiful. Because of this, I think that a reproduction of a Tachisme era piece of art makes a very romantic gift. Whether for a guy or girl, a birthday or a just because Tachisme captures the essence of beauty, of sensual movement and all without being too obvious or cheesy.

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