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Anarchist Chris Beekman

Anarchist Chris Beekman - Lyklema Fine Art

Chris Beekman was born on May 28, 1887 into a Roman Catholic carpenter's family. He learned to paint at a pottery bakery from the age of 13; he painted the pottery. In his spare time and during evening courses he developed his drawing and painting skills.

Kroller Moller

Until 1910 he painted in the grayish, dark style of the Hague School. From 1913 he lived in Paris for several years and his works became lighter. Around 1916 he returns to the Netherlands where he settled in Eemnes. He was friends with left-wing radicals such as Bart van der Leck, Peter Alma and Robert van 't Hoff. At that time he painted less fauvist or expressionist than contemporaries. From the years 1915 to 1917, the paintings and drawings became series of flat, stylized figurative works. In Laren and Blaricum he also met Piet Mondriaan and started working more and more according to the principles of De Stijl. He continues his search for abstraction and geometry with great freedom in geometric form; also, unlike Mondriaan, he does indeed use diagonals. Beekman, however, developed an aversion to the purely idealistic discussion within the movement and the, in his view, lack of concrete social meaning of De Stijl.Compositie-Kroller Moller

Compositie-Kroller Moller 

When Van Doesburg did not keep his promise to the painter Chris Beekman in the autumn of 1919 to complete the petition he had drawn up addressed to the government of the Netherlands and other European countries for a free exchange of mail to and from the Soviet Union, this was for Beekman decided to permanently stop his collaboration with De Stijl. And he never really wants to fit in, it seems.



The world was on fire and understandable socially committed painting had to be made for that. Disillusioned, Beekman searches for a way back to the people and to the figuration. In this way he forms a trait-d'union between De Stijl and the Russian Revolution: there too, many artists, including Malevich, returned to figuration.

In 1926, Beekman went to live and work in Amsterdam, where communism and politics became increasingly visible in his work with figurative art with a social slant. He wants to show the differences between rich and poor, for example. Workers were often his subjects. He also lent his work to some anti-fascist exhibitions. During and after the war about the resistance.

After the war, Beekman was a board member of the artists' organization "De Onhoudenen" and later the "Dutch Federation of Visual Artists' Associations", representing the interests of visual artists. He also remained politically active and was a member of trade unions and anarchist and communist movements. He died in 1964 in Blaricum. His paintings are in the Singer Museum, the Gemeentemuseum, the Kröller-Müller and the Museum Belvédère.



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