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Abstract Art

Source:- Google.com.pk
Abstract Art Biography
Jaap Eduard Helder was born in 1950 in Velsen, the Netherlands. Holland in the 1950s was busy rebuilding after the five year German occupation during World War II. Helder's father worked in Holland's largest steel mill. This industrial town with its freight trains and busy harbors was the landscape of Helder's youth. The industrial shapes and colors became an integral part of the imagery for his paintings.

Helder went to the classical school to study Latin, Greek, German, French, and English. His interests, however, were primarily in the arts and music. As a 13-year-old he first saw the Cubist paintings of Braque and Picasso and began to understand the possibilities of modern painting.

The Netherlands, as a country rich in cultural heritage, was a great place to grow up for someone interested in art. In school there were Escher and Mondrian prints on the walls, and in the news was Karel Appel with his wild and colorful abstract paintings. Helder also started listening to American jazz, and so began his attraction to the United States.

Helder started drawing and painting classes accompanied by his father, an enthusiastic portrait and landscape painter. During this time, Helder was included in a few group shows. After completing his education, he spent a year on the Southwest Coast of Ireland, painting and taking photos.

From Ireland, he traveled to Israel, where he also lived for about a year. The history of Israel and its landscape proved to be very inspiring for Helder. He then traveled to Cyprus, Greece, and Italy before settling in the United States and moving to Maine.

Helder started traveling to the Caribbean regularly, where the intensity of the colors and the African cultural influences initiated his interest in global indigenous art. This led to a series of neo-primitive paintings on sea-worn boards, and later into large paintings of primitive-inspired heads on canvas. Exhibitions of these paintings were held in Portland, Maine.

During the same period, Helder became acquainted with several artists who influenced and encouraged his work, including John Hultberg, an artist who had worked in Paris, New York, and on the West Coast. Hultberg's experience and travails in the art world inspired and informed Helder's progress during this time.

In the late 1980s, Helder continued to paint, exhibit, and sell paintings. In 1993 he was included in a group show called "The Painter's Theater", organized by George Lloyd. The show included such artists as Robert Colescott, Richard Merkin, Trevor Winkfield, and John Hultberg.

In 1998 Helder moved to Eastern Maine, where he continues to paint. The unspoiled, raw beauty of the Down East landscape, where the blueberry barrens meet the rugged coastline of the Atlantic Ocean, is a strong source of inspiration for his most recent work.

Helder's paintings are in numerous private and corporate collections.
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